Walsall man in service at the home of Lord Tredegar

Thanks to the Black Country Bugle for permission to use this article

 

Walsall man in service at the home of Lord Tredegar

By Black Country Bugle User  |  Posted: July 03, 2008

At the end of Queen Victorian’s reign, at the time of her death in 1901, it was recorded that there were 1.7 million women and 140,000 men still employed in domestic service. The great Victorian Age had given the upper and middle class levels of society a considerable amount of wealth, and the tradition of maintaining a house full of servants continued throughout the nineteenth century, and didn’t fall out of favour until after the First World War.

Almost every family history investigation reveals ancestors who were domestic servants at some stage in their lives, and in 1914 domestic service was still the largest single occupation for women. Houses of various sizes would employ as many servants as required to meet the needs and demands of the head of the household; the bigger the house the more servants there would have to be. It had always been the policy to employ new servants from locations at least 30 miles away, for it was feared by those who had the most to lose that younger servants especially might go running home at the first opportunity and spread unwanted gossip. To this end prospective employers advertised the positions available, rather than pass on any vacancies by word of mouth.

Prior to 1891 Frederick Tippett, a working class mon from Walsall, who may well have already been an experienced domestic servant, was hired to work at Tredegar House in Newport, South Wales, the home of Godfrey Morgan Lord Tredegar, a peer of the realm. He had joined a domestic army of 24 which included 15 women and nine men, living and working in the House. Eliza Cook was the housekeeper, a battle-axe of a woman in her sixties, who originally came from Swindon, Wiltshire. She had worked for the Morgans for years, and like so many domestics of her ilk had dedicated her life in service to others and was never married.

Eliza Cook may well have been the person who agreed to take Frederick on, as hiring and firing was one of her main duties. She was also a shrewd woman and didn’t necessarily employ girls who were too young or had no experience of domestic service at all.

In 1891 the youngest girls living and working at Tredegar House were Elizabeth Hillier aged 20 from Cardiff, and Mary Williams, also 20 from St David’s, Breconshire. The youngest male servant was Frank Sloman from Dorset, who was 19 years old.

Frederick Tippett was single [aged 30 in 1901 census] and although his job title isn’t known, he was most likely employed as a footman, with his duties clearly defined. He would have been a subordinate to the butler and if there was more than one footman, could have been placed in a ranking system according to height, size and good looks. Most were over six-feet tall, but additional inches could add additional income.

Often footmen were matched in size to maintain conformity in their joint appearance, and they were trained to act in unison. Frederick would have had a great many duties, ranging from seeing the head of the household and guests into their carriages on departure and receiving them on their arrival; polishing the household copper and plate; waiting at the table; and cleaning knives, cutlery, shoes and boots. Other duties at various times included trimming lamps; running errands; carrying coal; lighting the house at dusk; cleaning silver and gold; answering the drawing room and parlour bells; announcing visitors; waiting at dinner; attending the gentlemen in the smoking room following dinner; and attending in the front hall as guests were leaving. His uniform would have been white tie and tails with brass buttons that were most likely stamped with the Morgan family crest.

In 1891, the same time as our man from the Black Country was employed at Tredegar House, one of the servants wrote a letter to a friend, who was also a servant at a house in North Wales. Extracts from the letter give an indication of what the daily routine below stairs was like, particularly in the kitchen …
“There is a man in the kitchen who prepares and cooks all the meat, he’s the butcher. Then there is a man in the scullery, also a woman kept for washing up, and two still-room maids, and a woman comes every day to bake the bread. So there are five in the kitchen and two regularly in the scullery. I am afraid Miss Brown that sounds very much like a fairy tale, but when I tell you there are fourteen cold meats sent up every day for my Lord’s luncheon including four or five hot dishes, you will understand there is some work to be done in the kitchen alone. ”

For his service to Lord Tredegar, Frederick would have been paid £20 – £40 per annum, worked virtually every day from early morning till late at night, and only enjoyed some leisure time on a Sunday afternoon, or an occasional half day which was a reward if his work was deemed satisfactory and his behaviour conducted without blemish. Christmas at Tredegar House for Frederick would have been busier than ever. But come Twelfth Night he and the other servants would have been able to let their hair down and enjoy dancing and general merriment in the servants’ hall until the early hours. But woe-betide any who had too much to drink, for their duties started again at 6am the same morning.

EVAN MORGAN’S ROLLS ROYCE FOUND IN USA

From Will Cross and Monty Dart (and sincere thanks to Glynn and Nick Williams)

Will Cross, biographer of Evan Morgan informs us:

“When an e-mail (last Autumn) began “This is in strictest confidence!” the hair on the back of my neck began to rise a bit. When the plea for secrecy

adds, flatteringly “I’m certain you’re the best person to assist!” then the

narcissism of the writer inside me is all ears.

The item was a piece of breaking news that the source (a journalist)

understandably wanted to keep others mitts off from knowing the full details of the story until he was ready to reveal it to the world.

As the disclosure is now released into the public domain, I’m authorised to let the proverbial cat out of the bag! The subject is Evan Morgan, 4th Lord Tredegar, spendthrift, poet and playboy.

The latest news story is not about Evan’s darker frailties none the less the

story is a wonderfully interesting piece, especially as I (and I know there are many others too in the Friends of Tredegar House ) who remain hopelessly devoted to Evan Morgan, Lord Tredegar, and just about everything connected to him and his contemporaries.

Evan was of course  also known as Viscount Tredegar the last but one  of the coal baron Morgans to make Tredegar House, Newport, South Wales, UK their family seat and main homestead.  The House (currently undergoing extensive repairs to the roof) now survives and thrives in the hands of the National Trust. Evan is one of the treasures of Tredegar House when (and if) some of the guides and volunteers recount accurate and reliably sourced stories about him.

The newest Evan Morgan revelation is highly amusing after the discovery of one of Evan’s Rolls Royce motor cars in the USA.

The e-mail advised:

“A friend has bought a Rolls-Royce first built for Lord Tredegar in 1936. It’s in the United States and undergoing some very traumatic/dramatic changes – which with hindsight are in keeping with the dynasty – and the car will be unveiled soon.

As a journalist, I am producing an editorial for magazine/print use and have lots of technical history for the vehicle but am desperately seeking relevant images and pertinent details.”

The journalist at the centre of the enquiry introduced himself as Glynn Williams, MBE, a name well known in the motoring world and a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers.

I replied to the e-mail from Glynn saying that I would be delighted to help if I could and (to ensure more certain additional support) I summoned up a Tredegar House insider, my writing partner Monty Dart – who knows the machinations of Tredegar House and its people, and who strives to maintain integrity on Morgan family facts.

Monty and I did just that immediately, we orchestrated a trip for Glynn and his wife “for Evan vibes” and photographs around Tredegar House and grounds, including, the stables/ garages and forecourt where the fleet of Evan’s cars  were once housed –  Monty’s husband Tom Dart joined us too and added his own expertise.

According to the late George Evans (who was chauffeur to Evan from 1941-45) “Lord Tredegar had two Rolls Royces, a Hotchkiss   and a Daimler … also a Ford van for picks ups and shopping.  Evan had motorcars too including an old Vulcan model.

Evan always had luxury cars, when not being driven about he drove himself albeit erratically, Toad of Toad Hall was more accomplished.  In 1920 Aldous Huxley portrayed Evan as the fictional Ivor Lombard in his novel ‘Crome Yellow’ whizzing round the country driving a car.

One servants story is of Evan turning up once at Tredegar House in a green sports car – which was too wide to be garaged – Courtenay (Evan’s father)  wouldn’t have it anywhere and the car was never seen again. Another servant said when Evan’s car came into the vicinity of the House it would be clocked at the front entrance gate, a telephone call would be put through from the Lodge to the Hall Boy, who would go upstairs on the roof and put the flag up, and so it was flying when Evan arrived.

The results of the incredible new work on Evan’s Rolls Royce are in the links at the end of this account, with splendid photographs from Nick Williams (son of Glynn) who was  invited out to Mexico and USA to witness the car’s transformation and report back to his father. Although the text is not without some howlers in places on the description of Evan’s persona the revamping of the car and Nick’s tantalisingly epic photographs of the inside and outside of the new vehicle are all that matters. Absolutely stunning shots.

The team of Sam and Derek Hard from Hard Up Garage, Street Toys in Juarez, Mexico and Michael Lightborne in Elpaso have executed an amazing, fearsome job on the motor, which was unveiled at the SEMA show in Las Vegas last year. Albeit purists will bury themselves in oil slicks over the fate of a Rolls Royce from1936, a vehicle that was Evan’s pride and joy ridden his faithful chauffeurs John (Jack) and George Evans. I think Evan would have been chuffed to run gunshot or ride side saddle with these clever guys, they reek of the very same spark, bravado,the same daring, the same bohemian qualities as our beloved Evan at his best and worst.

Stand by for further news if and when the car goes into a major auction in the USA. Who knows there may be a chance of the car being included in a UK sale or on display. I understand the prospects are being investigated.

What a dream just to have been involved in cleaning Evan’s mudguards or shining up the beautiful car mascot.

Either way we shall not see the like of it again.

Will Cross and Monty Dart

6 February 2017

https://nwvt.myportfolio.com/rolls-royce-rat-rod

http://cars.barcroft.tv/lord-tredegar-rolls-royce-rat-rod-sema-las-vegas-custom-car

A history of the family of Morgan, from the year 1089 to present times- Written in 1902 by Appleton Morgan

appleton morgan2

With thanks to Monty Dart For this link

Written in 1902 (limited to 500 copies) by Appleton Morgan (1845-1928)

A history of the family of Morgan, from the year 1089 to present times

It was acquired by New York Public Library

Written by an American Morgan claiming to be a 27th generation of Cadifor Fawr

The reader will discover many USA Morgans hitherto unknown.

An Interactive and searchable book and can be downloaded or read on-line.

Here is a direct link.

https://archive.org/stream/historyoffamilyo00morg#page/n9/mode/2up.

appleton morgan

Blue Plaques In Newport

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Thanks to Cyril Highman of The Newport Civic Society for the following

CITY OF NEWPORT BLUE PLAQUES
Erected at sites of historical, natural or architectural interest in Newport

DOS NAIL WORKS AND COTTAGES. Built 1835 for J.J. Cordes, later of Brynglas House. It was the first large local factory and ran an evening class for its child employees.
Location: Factory Road (aptly named), a turning off Mill Street. The plaque is affixed to the still surviving office building, Cordes House.

THE WESTGATE HOTEL. Rebuilt 1885, still on the site of the town’s medieval western gateway. Here in 1839 troops repulsed the Chartists. Doric columns which flanked the portico are retained.
Location. A prominent city centre site at the junction of Commercial Street and Stow Hill. No longer in use as a hotel. Listed Grade 2.

THE CATTLE MARKET. Built in 1844 by the Tredegar Wharf Co. which earlier developed Pillgwenlly. For centuries before, produce and livestock had been traded in High Street.
Location: Off Commercial Road in an area bounded by Ruperra Street, West Market Street, East Market Street and South Market Street. South range, Listed Grade 2. The market site was cleared for re-development as a supermarket in 2010..

PARK SQUARE TRANSFORMER. From 1895 rubber-covered cable carried 2000 volt A.C. current from Newport’s first power station in Llanarth Street to transformers which reduced it to 200 volt for supplying the wealthier householders.
Location: Park Square (lying between Stow Hill and Commercial Street) Listed Grade 2. A similar example is located in Graham Street, Baneswell

THE OLD TOWN DOCK. Crowded river moorings proved inadequate for Newport’s expanding coal and iron trade. The first enclosed dock covering over four acres was built in 1842. Extended in 1858 it was filled in in 1931.
Location: From the southern end of Lower Dock Street it extended to what is now the Southern Distributor Road. The plaque is affixed to a listed building known as the Malt House

THE CUSTOM HOUSE. As ship movements concentrated ever further down river, ship brokers, chandlers, consulates and bonded warehouses became established in Lower Dock Street. H.M. Customs moved here from Skinner Street in 1858.
Location: Lower Dock Street. Listed Grade 2.

CAMBRIAN HOUSE. Built in 1854 for Thomas Spittle, who developed the Cambrian Foundry on a site later known as Spittle’s Point. He also owned works on the east bank where three iron ships were launched.
Location: St John’s Road, off Chepstow Road. Listed Grade 2.

PREACHING CROSS. This marks the original position of the town’s preaching cross. The base of the cross is now situated in the graveyard of Newport Cathedral.
Location: Stow Hill at its junction with Havelock Street. Note the reproduction town cross erected in High Street

BANESWELL. Before piped water in 1848, Newport’s 19,000 inhabitants drew from springs and wells as in medieval times. Districts were named after wells, though cholera and typhoid epidemics indicate they were not a pure supply.
Location: Pump Street, Baneswell Note the district named Eveswell on the Chepstow Road side of Newport

VICTORIA PLACE. Rennie-Hill, builders of the Town Dock erected this Regency style terrace on land given by William Townsend to provide access to Stow Hill from the south-east.
Location: Stow Hill, some 200 yards below the Cathedral. Listed Grade 2 (nos. 1 – 13 consequtively)

CRINDAU HOUSE. 1580 on moulded porch entry. Initials H.M. with date probably refer to Humphrey Morgan of Llantarnam who married Katherine Herbert, heiress of Crindau.
Location: Chelston Place, off Redland Street, Malpas Road

THE RAGGED SCHOOL. A national charitable movement provided Ragged Schools for children unable to pay to attend the National and British Schools run by the churches.
Location: Junction of Lower Dock Street and Mellon Street

THE FRIARS. Home of Octavius Morgan (1803-88). Antiquarian and horologist brother of 1st Lord Tredegar, M.P. for Monmouthshire 1841-74. Initiator of archaeological fieldwork at Caerwent and Caerleon and the Legionary Museum.
Location: Friars Road near its junction with Belle Vue Lane. Now occupied by the local health authority. Listed Grade 2.

TREDEGAR ESTATES OFFICE (1905). Formerly extending into Glamorganshire and Breconshire, the Tredegar Estate was, until its dispersal in 1956, the County’s biggest landowner. Here its records were kept and its rents paid.
Location: Pentonville, adjoining Mill Street. Surviving records are now lodged in the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth. Listed Grade 2.

BOUNDARY STONE. This marked the limit of the town from its medieval origins until 1835, when its first extension took in the workhouse (now part of St Woolos Hospital) and Pillgwenlly,
Location: Newport Cathedral raised walkway alongside Stow Hill. Visible only from the roadway.

JAMES FLEWITT MULLOCK 1818-1892. To commemorate the life of a Victorian Newportonian – artist – art teacher – bibliophile – educational reformer – bon vivant – horticulturalist and clerk to Newport and St Woolos Burial Board, the first municipal body of its kind in Britain.
Location: St Woolos Cemetery, Bassaleg Road, Affixed to former Keeper’s Lodge, inside entrance gates.

EMLYN ENGINEERING WORKS, The Newport Centre is built on the site of the former Emlyn Engineering Works opened in 1857 and owned by Charles D. Phillips. The works were a major iron foundry supporting colliery, shipping and railway interests.
Location: The Newport Centre, Kingsway. Note adjoining Emlyn Street.

GEORGE PHILIP REYNOLDS 1864-1907. Founder in 1887 of the Boys’ Brigade in Wales. The movement began at this church as the 1st Newport Company, which still meets in the City. The church was listed Grade II in 1997 for its polychromate italianate style.
Location: Havelock Street Presbyterian Church, Havelock Street, off Stow Hill.

NEWPORT PROVISIONS MARKET. Built in 1854, an early example of a large span cast iron frame building featuring its glass-filled barrel roof. The Dock Street offices and tower were constructed later in 1887.
Location: Upper Dock Street extending through into High Street. The plaque is mounted at the Dock Street end. Listed Grade 2.

JAMES MATTHEWS. Chief Librarian of Newport from 1875 to 1917. Author of ‘Historic Newport’, one of the few histories of the town, published in 1910 and reproduced by Newport Library in 1996. Previously closely involved in setting up the first children’s library in England.
Location: Newport Central Library and Museum, John Frost Square.

NEWPORT TOWN HALL. Stood with its imposing clock tower on this site from 1842 to 1960. The office transferred to the new Civic Centre in 1950. Field Marshal Sir Bernard Law Montgomery addressed the citizens from its gallery when granted the Freedom of Newport in 1945.
Location: British Home Stores, on the completely reconstructed site in Commercial Street

THE OLD POST OFFICE. Site of Newport’s first Head Post Office built in 1844 and re-built in 1907, the Edwardian facade being preserved in the total reconstruction of the island site in 2001. Once housed the town’s first telephone exchange, known as ‘The Savoy’. Listed Grade 2 in 1985.
Location: High Street. Note its siting close to the railway station where mail was delivered and despatched and to which it was connected by its own subway

ODEON CINEMA Designed in the Art Deco style by Arthur Price. One of a chain of cinemas created by Oscar Deutsch in the Thirties. A rare surviving example in Wales of the Odeon style. Listed Grade 2 in 1999.
Location: Clarence Place.

NEWPORT HARBOUR COMMISSIONERS LANDING STAGE. Paddle steamers of P & A Campbell’s famous White Funnel Fleet regularly sailed from near this point. Opened in the 1880s, extended in the mid-1890s and closed in the 1950s.
Location: South-eastern end of Newport Town Bridge. Newport Town Bridge is Listed Grade 2.

TREDEGAR HOUSE. For 500 years until 1951 the ancestral home of the Morgans of Tredegar. Listed Grade 1 as one of the finest restoration houses in Britain. Now in the care of Newport City Council.
Location: Cardiff Road near Junction 28 of the M4 Motorway. The House is surrounded by some 90 acres of beautiful Parkland. The plaque is mounted on its south-east face overlooking the cobbled service courtyard. The estate was leased to The National Trust in 2012.

JOHN FROST, 1784-1877. Chartist, Mayor of Newport 1836-7. Born Thomas Street.
Location: Thomas Street no longer exists as a public thoroughfare and has been absorbed behind a glazed facade linking the Old Post Office with the re-built Corn Exchange offices.

WILLIAM HENRY DAVIES, 1871-1940. Newport born poet and author.
‘What is this life, if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare ……..’
Two years after his birth in 6 Portland Street, William was taken into care by his paternal grandparents, proprietors of the nearby Church House Inn. The plaque was unveiled by John Masefield, Poet Laureate, in 1938. William died two years later on 26th September, 1940.

MAI JONES, 1899-1960. ‘We’ll keep a welcome in the hillsides’
Welsh songwriter, producer of radio show ‘Welsh Rarebit’ and entertainer
Resident at 19 St Mark’s Crescent, Newport
Plaque unveiled on 7th May 2010, the 50th anniversary of her death

WETLANDS RESERVE, Uskmouth East
Plaque unveiled 2nd March 2000 by the Chairman of the Cardiff Bay Development Corporation.
A major nature reserve acquired, designed and implemented in mitigation for the removal of the Taff Ely SSSI between 1996 and 1999. It was a joint project of the Land Authority for Wales and the Cardiff Bay Development Corporation

NEWPORT SHIP. In 2002 the remains of a large merchant-ship, dating from the fifteenth century, were discovered on this site.
LLONG CASNEWYDD, Yn 2002, ar y safle hwn, cafwyd hyd i olion llongfasnach fawr yn dyddio’n o’l i’r bymthegfed ganrif
Newport Riverfront Theatre. Unveiled jointly by Newport Civic Society and The Friends of the Newport Ship in October 2011

BELLE VUE PARK. Opened in 1894 by Lord Tredegar. Designed by Thomas Mawson, landscape architect, Windermere. Restored 2006 with aid of Heritage Lottery Fund.
PARC BELLE VUE, agorwyd yn 1894 gan Arglwydd Tredegar. Cynllunlwyd gan Thomas Mawson, Pensarn Tirlun, Windermere. Adferwyd yn 2006 gan Gyngor Dinas Casnewydd, gyda chymorth Cronfa Dredtadaeth y Loteri.

LADY RHONDDA – Margaret Haig Mackworth Suffragette and Editor
Set fire to letter-box in cemetery wall in Risca Road in June 1913 Plaque erected at house adjoining in June 2015

Link to Lady Rhondda

Revised June 2015 NE WPORT CIVIC SOCIETY
www.newportcivic.org
Registered Charity No. 700399 City of Newport Blue Plaques Revised2.doc
No 28 070510
City of Newport Blue Plaques Revised2.doc

 

Copyright © 2012 Friends of Tredegar House