Williams, Samuel

Samuel Williams was born in Liverpool in 1888. He was brought up in Dyserth by his uncle and aunt John and Ann Williams who, it would seem, had no children of their own. The family lived in Ty’n y Ffynnon, Bryniau.

John Williams was originally from Cwm and had worked as both a lead miner and a coal miner. In 1881 Ann’s widowed father, Thomas Parry, was living with them in Ty’n y Ffynnon. He too was employed in the lead mines…. probably in the Talargoch mines which were situated between Dyserth and Meliden. Both Ann and her father were born in Dyserth and the family was Welsh speaking.

The 1891 census shows that 3 year old Samuel was now living with John and Ann. We don’t know the circumstances that brought him to his relatives, however Dyserth is where he remained throughout his childhood. Sometime during the following decade John Williams died and by 1901 Ann had moved to Gofer/Gover in lower Dyserth. She was earning a living as a charwoman to support both herself and a little girl called Daisy Hughes who was living with her. Samuel, now 13, was employed as a milkboy on Rhyd farm. It was customary for farm servants to live in their place of work so Rhyd would have been his home at the time.

By 1911 he was back in Gover with his aunt and Daisy. (Daisy had now been adopted by Ann.) His occupation was ‘kitchen gardener’. In the early part of 1914, when he was 26, Samuel married Jennie Roberts and they went on to have a son.

Samuel joined the 24th Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Later he transferred to the 6th Battalion, South Wales Borderers which was initially a service battalion, later becoming a pioneer battalion. The Battalion saw active service in France from 1915 onwards. As none of Samuel Williams’s service records have survived we do not know what part he played in the war. (Most of the service records from WW1 were destroyed in the Blitz during WW2)

He was de-mobbed in the latter part of 1919. However the civilian life he had hoped to resume was not to be for, sadly, Samuel died soon afterwards.

He was buried in St. Bridget’s Churchyard, Dyserth, in the village where he was brought up.

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