Cymraeg

The Experiences of Women in World War One

A collection of information, experiences and photographs recorded by Women's Archive of Wales in 2014-18

A collection of information, experiences and photographs recorded by Women's Archive of Wales in 2014-18

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Margaret Haig Thomas (Mrs/Lady Mackworth, Lady Rhondda)

Place of birth: London

Service: Suffragette, business woman, Commissioner and Controller, editor and publisher, Women’s National Service Department, Ministry of

Death: 1958/07/20, London, Cause not known

Notes: Margaret Haig Thomas, born 1883, was the only child of D.A.Thomas MP, first Viscount Rhondda, and his wife Sybil. The family home was in Llanwern. The family were supporters of women’s suffrage, and Margaret joined the WSPU in Newport in 1909, becoming increasingly militant. In June 1913 she spent six days in Usk Gaol following an attempt to burn out a pillar box in Newport. She strongly supported the war, but did not follow Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst’s extreme jingoism. After working on behalf of Belgian refugees in the early months of the war, she was travelling to New York in the Lusitania, with her father, when it was hit by a German torpedo and sunk on 7th May 1915. Margaret and her father both survived, though she was unconscious in the water for over two hours. [click on the link for her account recorded in 1950 http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02qvqwp ]. In 1916 she began work for the Ministry of National Service in Wales, and London, becoming Commissioner of Women’s National Service in Wales and Monmouthshire early in 1917, particularly charged with encouraging girls and women into agriculture. Soon she was also heavily recruiting young women for the WAAC, particularly those qualified to work as army clerks in France. Women were also needed for the newly formed WRNS and WRAF. In February 1918 she was appointed Chief Controller of the Women’s Section of the Ministry of National Service.rnOn the death of her father in 1918 Margaret inherited the title of Lady Rhondda. She continued in business and public life for many years after the war.rn

Sources: Angela V John Turning the Tide’, Parthian Books 2013 http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02qvqwp

Reference: WaW0257

Advertisement for a meeting in Brecon to be addressed by Lady Mackworth. Brecon County Times 12th April 1917

Newspaper advertisement

Advertisement for a meeting in Brecon to be addressed by Lady Mackworth. Brecon County Times 12th April 1917

First section of a long report of Lady Mackworth’s experiences in the sinking of the Lusitania.  Cambrian Daily Leader 10th May 1915. For full account go to http://newspapers.library.wales/search?alt=full_text%3A%22Lady%22+AND+full_text%3A%22Mackworth%22&range%5Bmin%5D=1915-1-01T00%3A00%3A00Z&range%5Bmax%5D=1915-12-31T00%3A00%3A00Z&page=5

Newspaper report

First section of a long report of Lady Mackworth’s experiences in the sinking of the Lusitania. Cambrian Daily Leader 10th May 1915. For full account go to http://newspapers.library.wales/search?alt=full_text%3A%22Lady%22+AND+full_text%3A%22Mackworth%22&range%5Bmin%5D=1915-1-01T00%3A00%3A00Z&range%5Bmax%5D=1915-12-31T00%3A00%3A00Z&page=5


Report of Mrs Mackworth’s release from Usk Gaol. Aberdare Leader 19th July 1913.

Newspaper report

Report of Mrs Mackworth’s release from Usk Gaol. Aberdare Leader 19th July 1913.

Photograph of newly recruited WAAC clerks on the steps of the Law Courts, Cardiff, June 1917. They are about to leave for France. Margaret Mackworth is front right

Photograph of WAAC clerks

Photograph of newly recruited WAAC clerks on the steps of the Law Courts, Cardiff, June 1917. They are about to leave for France. Margaret Mackworth is front right


Margaret Mackworth’s article on National Service for Welsh women, in the periodical Welsh Outlook, vol 4, no 7, July 1917.

Welsh Outlook

Margaret Mackworth’s article on National Service for Welsh women, in the periodical Welsh Outlook, vol 4, no 7, July 1917.

Advertisement for Women’s War Work Week exhibition, held at Howells department store, Cardiff, April 1918.

Newspaper advertisement

Advertisement for Women’s War Work Week exhibition, held at Howells department store, Cardiff, April 1918.


Elsie Williams

Place of birth: Abertillery ?

Service: Baling Hand, Womens Forage Corps (WFC)

Notes: Elsie’s name appears on a list of names of women who died working in the Women’s Forage Corps. Her next of kin is given as Mrs Williams, 7 Cyril Place, Abertillery. Nothing further is known of her.

Reference: WaW0146

List of members of the WFC who died in service.

Nominal Roll

List of members of the WFC who died in service.


Catherine Jane (Kit) Evans (Grainger)

Place of birth: Llanasa, Flintshire

Service: Agricultural worker, Womens Land Army

Death: 1969, Cause not known

Notes: Catherine, born 1896, was one of 10 children – 6 sisters and 3 brothers. At 15, in 1911, she was working at the Afon Goch Inn, Trelogan. In 1917 she joined the WLA, and seems to have been posted to the Machynlleth area. There she met and married Pte G V Grainger of the South Lancashire Regiment in 1918. Thanks to Sue Hickman.

Reference: WaW0448

Photograph of Catherine Evans in WLA uniform with four of her sisters, left to right Harriet, Rebecca, Sarah and Miriam

Photograph

Photograph of Catherine Evans in WLA uniform with four of her sisters, left to right Harriet, Rebecca, Sarah and Miriam

Photograph of Catherine and her future husband George Grainger.

Photograph

Photograph of Catherine and her future husband George Grainger.


Gladys May Evans

Place of birth: Margam/Port Talbot ?

Service: Gardener, Womens Land Army

Death: 1952, Cause not known

Notes: Gladys, born 1898, worked in the gardens of St Fagan’s Castle. The castle itself was a war hospital, and the gardens supplied the kitchens. There are several photographs of Gladys; perhaps they were for publicity purposes.

Reference: WaW0449

Gladys May Evans in WLA uniform, possibly taken in St Fagans Castle. The badge represents ‘two months approved service’.

Gladys May Evans

Gladys May Evans in WLA uniform, possibly taken in St Fagans Castle. The badge represents ‘two months approved service’.

A slightly less formal portrait of Gladys.

Gladys May Evans

A slightly less formal portrait of Gladys.


Gladys wearing a WLA armband.

Gladys May Evans

Gladys wearing a WLA armband.

Gladys in wet weather gear.

Gladys May Evans

Gladys in wet weather gear.


Margaret Irene John

Place of birth: Penygraig

Service: Administrator, lady superintendent , Womens League

Notes: Margaret John, a teacher of domestic arts in Monmouthshire, who had trained in Aberystwyth, Cardiff and London, joined the Women’s Legion in 1916 as one of their skilled cooks. After some months as Lady Superintendent in Wiltshire she was sent to France as ‘area administratrix’ in October 1917.

Reference: WaW0380

Report of local JP’s daughter Margaret John being posted to France. Rhondda Leader 27th October 1917.

Newspaper report

Report of local JP’s daughter Margaret John being posted to France. Rhondda Leader 27th October 1917.


Dilys Herbert

Place of birth: Ammanford

Service: Volunteer, ambulance driver, Womens Legion

Notes: Dilys was one of the members of the Women’s Legion of Motor Drivers to be inspected by the Queen at Buckingham Palace in March 1918. She had been involved in voluntary work throughout the war, including being an enumerator in the National Registration ‘of all persons between the ages of 15 and 65’ in August 1915.

Reference: WaW0340

Report of Womens Legion reception at Buckingham Palace.Cambria Daily Leader 21st March 1918

Newspaper report

Report of Womens Legion reception at Buckingham Palace.Cambria Daily Leader 21st March 1918

Article naming Dilys Herbert as a volunteer enumerator. Herald of Wales and Monmouthshire Recorder 7th August 1915rn

Newspaper report

Article naming Dilys Herbert as a volunteer enumerator. Herald of Wales and Monmouthshire Recorder 7th August 1915rn


Mary Ellen Small

Place of birth: Abercreg[g]an

Service: Waitress, Womens Legion

Notes: Mary Ellen Small gave birth to a baby boy in April 1918. The father William Speake, who denied paternity, was a corporal in the Welsh Regiment, and formerly a collier from Trealaw. They met while he was training at Kinmel Camp at Boddelwyddan, where she worked as a waitress. He was ordered to pay 5 shillings a week until the boy was 14.

Reference: WaW0341

Report of the case of Small v Speake. Cambria Daily Leader 25th June 1918rnrn

Newspaper report

Report of the case of Small v Speake. Cambria Daily Leader 25th June 1918rnrn


Cissie Cripps

Place of birth: Brecon

Service: Volunteer, Womens Volunteer Reserve Corps, 1915 - ?

Death: 1956, Montreal, Canada, Cause not known

Notes: Cissie was a chauffeuse before the war. She had two brothers serving in the army, and joined the Women’s Volunteer Reserve Corps in Folkestone in August 1915. In 1920 she emigrated to Montreal Canada, where she later married George Elsdon Mears and had three daughters. Thanks to Ian Sumpter.

Reference: WaW0374

Cissie Cripps of Brecon, looking ‘very smart’ in uniform. Brecon County Times 12th August 1915.

Cissie Cripps

Cissie Cripps of Brecon, looking ‘very smart’ in uniform. Brecon County Times 12th August 1915.


Elsie Williams

Place of birth: Abetillery ?

Service: Baling Hand, Women\\\'s Forage Corps

Notes: Elsie’s name appears on a list of names of women who died working in the Women’s Forage Corps. Her next of kin is given as Mrs Williams, 7 Cyrils Place, Abertillery. Nothing further is known of her.

Reference: WaW0223


Frances Mary Dulcie Llewellyn-Jones

Place of birth: Llandow

Service: Driver, WRAF, 1918:11:13

Death: Mexborough Military Hospital, Yorkshire, Influenza / Y Ffliw?

Memorial: Christchurch graveyard, Newport, Monmouthshire

Notes: Aged 22. Daughter of the Rev. David Ernest Llewellyn-Jones and Frances Eliza Sophia of Maindee Vicarage, Newport.

Reference: WaW0093

Grave of Dulcie Llewellyn-Jones, Christchurch Cemetery, Newport

Grave of Dulcie Llewellyn-Jones

Grave of Dulcie Llewellyn-Jones, Christchurch Cemetery, Newport

Frances Llewellyn-Jones's service record

Frances Llewellyn-Jones' Service

Frances Llewellyn-Jones's service record


Newspaper report of Frances Llewellyn Jones's death

Newspaper report

Newspaper report of Frances Llewellyn Jones's death

Dulcie Llewellyn-Jones's name on Newport Roll of Honour

Newport Roll of Honour

Dulcie Llewellyn-Jones's name on Newport Roll of Honour



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