First Stop' - 100 Years of News Stories
Merlin 13th January, 1830
The Monmouthshire Canal with its double line of communication from Newport to Crumlin on the one side, and from Newport to Pontypool on the other - its numerous wharfs, railways, and other conveniences - is perhaps one of the finest public works in Great Britain. It is not only to be viewed as a noble monument of public enterprize (sic) grand in design, and arduous of execution: Let the benefits it has conferred on the county be taken into consideration, and the difficulties that have been conquered in perfecting the work are not at once forgotten, rendered of minor importance. Little should we have to boast of the mineral treasures contained in our bleak and outwardly barren mountains, if the conveyance to market was not facilitated by the canals or railways.
Merlin 16th January, 1830
A Meeting of the Corporation of this town was held this day, which was attended by Sir Charles Morgan, Bart. and Thomas Prothero Esq., Town Clerk, when Messrs Joseph Latch, John Owen and Edmund Jones were unanimously chosen Aldermen of the Borough.
Merlin. 27th February, 1830
Newport Steam Packets will commence running twice a day on the 1st March as usual. These excellent and well conducted vessels have daily performed their passages with the utmost regularity throughout the winter, and thus afforded to passengers particular accommodation in a certain and speedy conveyance to and from the Principality, when the severity of the weather impeded every other mode of travelling.
A man died at Newport on Saturday of apoplexy. Mr. Tatham a surgeon, called on the man's wife to request permission to open his body. She, after some hesitation replied, "Well what are you going to stand?" Mr Tatham asked what she meant by "stand." "Oh," said the lady, "you know very well; if you give six pounds you may open him, but not without." The surgeon considered six pounds rather too much for a peep, left the corpse unopened.
A short time since, a young woman called upon a respected solicitor in this town and exhibited a promise of marriage written by her lover on a twopenny receipt stamp. She stated that she waited upon him to enquire whether the document was drawn up on a proper and a legal stamp.
The Coal Works here are all at a standstill in consequence of the coal masters having reduced the cutters by two pence a ton. The men stand out for their price and to do away with the Truck System. Thomas Prothero and J.H. Moggridge Esqs., with some other gentlemen met between four and five thousand on Monday. The men behaved very quietly. Mr. Prothero told them he had no wish to reduce their wages - that he had no shop -and that he would pay them every week in money.
As a caution to others with a little money in their pockets who may chance to fall in with the "sharpers" and who might be induced to "try their luck" be it known that a respectable farmer on the way to our market on Wednesday met with three fellows who proposed to him a game at the thimble and pea which our friend readily accepted. The result may be anticipated. Nine sovereigns transferred to the pockets of the scoundrels in a very few minutes. These thimble and pea gentry can be successful whenever they choose - the thimble being made with a small magnet lodged in the top, but the pea which is steel, is attracted to a hollow place or chamber within it. To entice by a little partial success the pea is easily dislodged by a gently sly tap.
On Friday morning about two o'clock, the shop owned by Mr. Napper, the confectioner of Newport, was attempted to be opened by the front doors, but the thieves were disturbed without accomplishing their object, one man was taken up on suspicion but there not being sufficient proof to commit him, he was liberated.
On Monday as John Warwell one of the Newport pilots was going down the river, the boat he was in was run foul of near the Powder-House by the schooner Mary and Frances of Wexford, by which unfortunate accident he lost his life. Warwell being a young man much beloved, the vessels in the port hoisted their colours half-mast high in testimony of respect for his memory. We understand he is the second brother in the family who has met a watery grave
On Tuesday morning the 18th an elopement took place from Newport in this County, between Mr. "J" aged somewhere about 55 and Mrs. "C" about 19. The former has a wife and seven or eight children grown up, and a son lately married. The lady had parted from her husband and lived with her parents who are persons of respectability. Mr. "J" resided in a house of the lady's father, his next door neighbour, and attended the family as a surgeon. It appears that the lady let herself out of the window with a rope, and the gentleman had a gig ready to receive her. They crossed the Passage about three o'clock in the morning. When the party was first missed, it was generally reported that the lady had gone to her husband, who it was said, had gone to Bristol the day before, and that Mr. "J" had gone with her to affect a reconciliation between the husband and wife, who were nearly of the same age. However on Wednesday, the transaction became public, a pursuit took place and the fugitives were overtaken at Hull. What makes this the more disgraceful is that it was carried on, as we are informed, under the cloak of religion. Mr. "J" attending the Tabernacle where the lady and her family attended.
By an Order of the Privy Council forwarded by the Sheriff of the County to the Mayor of Newport, directing him to proclaim the accession of our Most Gracious Sovereign William IV to the Throne, bills were distributed announcing that the Ceremony would take place on 5th inst.
At an early hour an immense number of spectators were assembled to witness the Ceremony; and at eleven o'clock a party of the 93rd Highlanders arrived, commanded by Captain Banner, for the purpose of heading the procession. At twelve o'clock a flourish of trumpets announced the arrival of the Mayor and Corporation, preceded by the Town Clerk, and took their place in the procession when the Proclamation was read by the Mayor, at the conclusion of which, the air was rent with the united acclamations of the assembled thousands.
The procession then marched to the Bridge where the Mayor read the Proclamation again. There was much delight amongst the spectators on this joyous occasion, flags were waved from the buildings and a salute of guns was heard from the Barracks fields. The Mayor, Corporation, and some two hundred gentlemen then repaired to the King's Head for a celebration lunch. The Loyal Toast was drunk with enthusiasm and the assembly settled down to a delectable repast.
At the end Thomas Prothero Esq., the Town Clerk, proposed the health of the High Sheriff which was drunk with great applause; the Mayor and Corporation then retired. The gentlemen who sat down did so under the impression that the entertainment was to have been defrayed amongst themselves, and sovereigns were heard clattering upon plates, when Mr. Prothero, on behalf of the Corporation, rose to inform them that the whole was to be paid from the Corporation Fund. The intelligence of such unexpected liberality electrified the room, and of course was hailed with thunderous applause. The Corporation also gave orders that 14 barrels of beer should be distributed among the populace and the boys of the National Schools, upwards of 360, were regaled with plum cakes, and some dinner was provided for the Company of 93rd Highlanders who are now stationed here. Bell ringing and firing continued throughout the day, business was suspended, and every countenance beamed with conviviality.
Merlin 31st July, 1830
Mr. Prothero, of Newport, has recently introduced an engine for hauling coal from his collieries to his wharf at Pillgwenlly. The engine has been made by Messrs Price & Co. of Neath Colliery. On Tuesday last twenty tram wagons weighing 15 tons were attached to it which it drove with the greatest of ease, at the rate of four miles an hour, up the tram road to Mr. Prothero's colliery called Dlancyffin Isha, where twenty wagons loaded with coal were attached to it for the return journey, which it accomplished with ease.
A young girl named Mary Evans, who according to her account had lived for the last twelve months with a gentleman and lady of the name Montgomery at Mount Pleasant near Newport and whose service she had left in consequence of going abroad, was on her way from Newport to a relation at Ross on Monday last when she was joined as she was walking along the road, three or four miles from Newport, by two men who treated her with civility. One of them after a little while pressed her to let him carry a small box which she had with her tied up in a red handkerchief which she unwillingly submitted to. They had not proceeded about half a mile together when the fellow with her box turned off the road into a wood followed by his companion. The girl saw them hastening along a path through the wood, and men and box soon disappeared. The girl's distress may readily be imagined. She had not only lost the square mahogany work box which her late mistress had given her, but also four sovereigns and fifteen shillings and sixpence the savings of her wages. One of the men she describes as stout made with dark complexion and black whiskers, blue coat, black waistcoat, red neckerchief and light pepper and salt trowsers (sic). The other had a pale face with light hair, fustian jacket and blue cloth trowsers, (sic), with a coloured neckerchief. The stout man had a little bundle of his own in a blue cotton handkerchief.
Lamentable accounts of the destruction of property in almost every part of the country appears to me to call loudly upon everyone to take the most efficient steps to check the further progress in order to avoid some greater calamity. To reason with the populace so infatuated, so as to destroy the very means by which they exist, is hopeless, but I can see much may yet be done to prevent further mischief; if farmers and others employing machinery, were to lay them aside for the present, until the condition of the labouring classes be ameliorated again. Advantage should not be taken of the distressed state of the people, to wring from them their daily labour, at wages that will not suffice to support themselves and families. In many places the poor are not relieved to the extent they are entitled by their Parishes, one shilling and one shilling and sixpence per week being all the relief afforded to adult persons, who, from age or sickness, are totally incapacitated from earning an additional farthing. The approaching inclement season demands, in such cases as these, further relief.
It has often struck me as anomalous, that in almost every town in the Kingdom, persons busy themselves getting up "Anti-Slavery Petitions" while they are regardless of the wants of their own population.
I am Sir
On Monday last a public meeting of the Borough of Newport and the Parish of St. Woolos was held at the Kings Head, Sir Charles Morgan, Bart, in the Chair. Resolutions for preventing the prevalence of incendiarism and preserving the peace in the neighbourhood were agreed upon. It was proposed that no person should be unaware or ignorant of the punishment which the Law pronounces on those who destroy property by fire. It is right to remind them that such punishment is DEATH.
It was also agreed by the meeting to provide employment and adequate wages, for every working man in the district. Where disposition is thus publicly avowed by the rich to provide for the necessities of the poor, riot and disturbance can only proceed from the dissolute and idle, who had rather live on the precarious gains of theft and begging, than obtain an honourable subsistence by the sweat of their brows.
An aurora Borealis of the most beautiful description was seen in Newport on Sunday night last between ten and eleven o'clock.
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First Stop' - 100 Years of News Stories