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The Welsh Settlement

The Arrangement Of The Welsh Colony


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By Charles B. Browning.

John ap John became a Convert of George Fox's appeal for Quakerism and became the founder of the Society of Friends in Wales ..."After the Toleration Act of Parliament was passed, irregular yearly meetings were organized throughout Wales. The first of those at Swansea, 1681, and at Redstone near Narboth in Pembrokeshire, 2nd, Mo.5th, 1682."...

William Penn succeeded in interesting many of these Welsh Friends, in the New Land in Pennsylvania. Among the first to meet with Penn through the I of John ap John, were; ...

  • John ap John of Ruabon, Flintshire , Wales

    Dr. Thomas Wynn Caorwys, Flintshire, Wales

    Dr. Griffeth Owen, of Dolserre Merionethshire

    Richard ap Thomas, of Whitford Carne, Flintshire

    Dr. Edward Jones, of Bala, Merionethshire

    John ap Thomas, of Llaithgwyn, Merionethshire

    Hugh Roberto, of Llandvwar, Merionethshire

    Thomas Ellis, of Dolscere, Merionethshire

    Charles Lloyd, of Dolabran, Merionethshire

    Richard Davis, of Welsh Pool, Merionethshire

    John ap Evan (Bevan) of Treverigg, Merionethshire

    Lewis ap David, (Lewis David) of Landewy, Valfrg, Pembrokeshire..

  • ( Among others who may have met with the others but not with Penn, were: Edward Pritchard (ap Richard)

    William Jenkins

    John Burge

    Robert Owens

    John Roberts

    Robert Owen

    Henry Lewis (son of Evan A--1) of Marbeth, Pembrokeshire on

    Of these gentlemen, the three doctors, end and Messers, Bevan, Roberts, Ellis, Owen removed to Pennsylvania and aided in settling the first emigrants of the Welsh people on the land purchased from them as original patentees: thus these men became the first "real estate agents in Pennsylvania, having sold the Welch Friends and taken themselves 30,000 acres of land in Cumbria or better known as the Welch Tract, Northwest of the now city of Philadelphia.

    There were seven land companies formed for the division and sale of the 30,00O acres in the Tract. Those companies were granted or parented blocks of land, which each company subdivided and sold to others, the heads of each company retained some for himself. The usual size of the company's grants were 5000 acres although others had less. The original instruments of each Patent are in existence today some of those are in the Friends Historical Library at Swarthmore College, also Haverford College, and also Philadelphia.

    (The book "Early Land Records Of Pennsylvania" by Egle, gives the abstracts of these patents)

    The Companies were:

    #1. John ap Thomas, of of Llaithgyn, Merionethshire ...5000acres.

    Dr. Edward Jone of Bala, Merionethshire, ...5000 acres

    #2 Charles Lloyd of D, , Merionethshire ...5000 acres

    Margaret Davies, of Dolobran , M (Widow of William Lewis) 5000 acres

    #3 John ap Evans of Treverigg, Glamorganshire, ...2000 acres

    #4John ap John of Ruabom, Denbighshire

    #5 Dr. Thomas Wynn of Caerwys, Flintshire,

    #5 Lewis ap David, Llandewy, Pembrokeshire ...2000 acres

    #6 Richard ap Thomas, of Whitford Garne, Flintshire ...3000

    #7 Richard Davies of Welshpoole, M,

    The history and individual purchases of these various companies is very interesting but too long to be incorporated in this treaties at this time. We are primarily interested in that of Company #5, That of Lewis David, the name he assumed in the "New Land" It was the custom among the Welsh in their native land to adopt the first name of their father as their family name but upon coming to America they usually made it their surname. Thus John ap Evan, John the son of Evan, became John Bevan, and Richard ap Thomas became Richard Thomas, etc.

    Lewis David Subscribed for 3000 acres and it was conveyed to him by deeds the 2nd, of March, 1661, for which Lb. 60 was paid. Of this acreage the following took under deed of lease and release dated May 10th, 1682:

    William Howell, of Cattlebigoh, Pembrokeshire, (Yeoman) ...500 acres ,

    Henry Lewis, of Narbeth P (Yeoman) ....1000

    Evan Thomas, of Lanykeaven, Pernbrokeshire, (Yeoman) ...250 acres

    Ross Rogers (Rotheroe) Lanwsnog Cariligan, (Yeoman) ...500 acres

    Lewis David of Llandewy Velfreu, Pembrokeshire

    retained for himself Oct. 24th, 1681 ...750 acres

    "The Patent for the above land to Penn from King Charles is the basis of all deeds (given later) for all the lands. "On the 16th of 12 Mo 1701: being grantees in the "right of Lewis David" of the original Company, had their purchases resurveyed and confirmed to them

    Henry Thomas, 400 acres and 160 acres in Haverford Township

    John Lewis, Sr. 350 acres in Haverford Township

    John Lewis, Jr. 100 acres in Haverford Township

    Richard Hayes 260 acres in Haverford Township

    John David Thomas, 210 acres in Duffeirn Mawr Township

    Maurice Llewellyn 420 acres in Haverford Township

    David Hugh 220 acres in Haverford Township

    Nathan Thomas 81 acres in Haverford Township

    100 acres in upper end Welsh Tract

    Of the William Howell tract of 500 acres in Haverford and Marple Townships, he sold by deeds of 3rd mo. 29th, 1697: Jonathan Hayes, 200 acres in Marple Township, and David Hugh 220 acres in Haverford and Marple Townships, in his own rights and on account of Evan Thomas, whose widow he married, 35 acres of Liberty Lands. In 1720 Howell sold 10 acres of Liberty Land to Benjamin Chambers,

    Lewis David took for himself 750 acres of land in Haverford Township, but by deed of May 10th, 1682, he sold 250 acres to Maurice Shurfield of Scourfield, who by dead of April 22nd, l699 sold same to Owen Thomas, who by deed of Nov 15, 1701 sold the same to Ralph Lewis.

    Henry Lewis (no relation to Ralph) bought of Lewis David by deed of May 10th, 1682, 1000 acres for which he paid Lb.25, .......part of the tract was laid out in acres in Haverford Township, his 20 acres, of Liberty Lands he sold to John Ball. He sold by deed of 6th Mo. 12, 1684, 250 acres to John Lewis (no relation), who also had 100 acres from William Rowe; who had same from Thomas Ellis in Haverford. Henry's son Henry Jr. also conveyed by deed 12 Mo 1st. 1694/5 to Richard Hayes, Sr. 50 acres, who had 50 acres bought of William Howell and 160 acres from John Burge.

    Henry Lewis, Jr., having right of 100 acres in the Welsh Tract on his fathers account and 79, acres bought of John Burge, had same laid out in the Great Valley. On resurvey this 250 ) acres was found to be 352. He had 68 acres overplus. He also had 50 acres over-plus on his 600 acres in Haverford. He bought the over.

    Henry Lewis, Sr., is perhaps one of the best known of this Company; i.e. "Lewis David's"; He called his 250 acre seat or plantation in Haverford, "Maencoch" . He and his wife Margaret removed from Narboth, Pembrokeshire, Wales in 1862. As a member of the Religious Society of Friends he was strict in the performance of his duties, and during the short period in which he lived , after reaching his home, be devoted much of his time to civil affairs, and Acts of benevolence . Before the establishment of Haverford Monthly Meeting he and his family belonged to the Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, and he was appointed by that Meeting one of the Committee to visit the poor and sick, and administer what they should judge convenient, at the expense of the Monthly Meeting. He also held the office of Peace maker (see Enoch Lewis memoirs) for Philadelphia County, and was a foreman of the First Grand Jury for that County. His will dated 6th Mo. 14th, 1688, witnessed by Lewis David, Griffeth Owen and Thomas Ellis, all well known gentlemen of the time, of Haverford Township, was proven at Philadelphia 8th Mo. 8th 1705:

    "After a little more than six years residence in the province, Henry Lewis died in the vigor of his manhood. He was buried at Haverford (Friends burial Ground) so says the minute of the event in the book of the Monthly Meeting to which he belonged, on ye 17th day of ye sixth month 1688. He left a Widow Margaret, the sons Henry and Samuel and a daughter Elizabeth, afterwards the wife of Richard Hayes, one of the leading men of the province.

    He was carpenter by trade and owned a house and two lots in Philadelphia . He left the homestead to his wife Margaret and desired that, after her death Henry Lewis Jr., and Lewis Lewis should havc it. He provided for his son Samuel and daughter Margaret.

    Richard Hayes, Sr., and his Issatt were aged Friends when they removed from Pembrokeshire to Haverford Township, in 1667. In his will dated 8th month 4th, 1697, proven Oct. 50th, 1697, witnessed by William Jenkins, Adam Roads, William Howell, Henry and Samuel Lewis, he left his estate to his wife Isaatt and after her decease to his son and heir Richard Hayes, Jr. He gave legacies his son John and Cousin Sarah James and to Haverford Meeting.

    The children of Richard Hayes, Jr., were Joseph, Mary, Hannah, Richard and Benjamin. Joseph married Hannah David, dau of (Lewis?) Lewis; Mary, John Jacobs of Porkiomen; Hannah, James Jones son of David; Richard, Sarah David sister of Hannah ; and Benjamin married Mary Jones, dau of Jonathan."

    About Preston Meeting in Philadelphia

    Nicholas Waln, 3rd (of Philadelphia) visited in Preston Meeting in 1784, accompanied by Settle Friends.

    Population of Preston, 1660-1760, was 5000 to 6000.

    The earliest Preparative Meeting book of Fylde is 1711.

    Note : on the earliest publishers of Society: In 9-2-1704. John Piggott of Philadelphia married Alice Reyneirs, daughter of Reinier Jansen of same place, printer; Reinier Jansen signed as does also Joseph Reyniers.

    Testimonies of Friends at Quarterly Meeting of Montgomeryshire, Shropshire and Merioneth, held at Dolobran in Montgomery, 11-25-1705, concerning Richard Davies:

    "He and his wife were very hearty, loving and ready to entertain Friends, their Hearts and House open in that respect ."

    Signed by:

    Charles Lloyd

    Rowland Roberts

    Wm. . Reynolds.

    Robt. Vaughan

    Humphrey Owen -

    Robert Griffiths

    Jacob Endon

    John Simpson

    Gwen Lewis

    Tho. Cadwalader

    Richard Lewis

    John Richards

    Ellis Lewis

    Wm. Osborn

    Tho. Oliver

    Joseph Davies

    Richard Evans

    Edward Ellis

    Wm. Soley

    Richard Bemboo ???


    Rich. Ruft

    John Roberts

    Julius Palmer

    John Kelsall

    Amos Davies

    The above must be from a book called"Accounts of the Conversion of Richard Davies ...Spread Truth in North Wales, printed in 1777. Note: An Ellis and Owen Lewis were with Richard Davies at Gwynnd (Sp?), brothers?

    Antiquain (?) Research of Early Printers and Publishers Extracted from the American Friends, published in Philadelphia -1844. The name Manchester also appears here, perhaps reprinted on Manchester.

    In Pennsylvania Ellis & Owen Lewis are descended from the Henry Lewis line. S/o David s/o Evan Lewis.

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    Last Updated January 25, 2001 by Humphri