Huw Llywelyn Rees


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22nd November

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By: Huw Llywelyn Rees
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A three-year dispute began on 22 November 1900 when 2800 men walked out of the Penrhyn Quarry in Bethesda. Most of the quarrymen held out for three years, by which time they had been crippled by hardship.

 The dispute was the result of years of ongoing dissatisfaction in the quarrying industry. An agreement or 'bargain', which had protected the quarrymen’s earnings against working with rock of variable quality, had not been honoured, and the entire workforce went on strike.  

The quarry owner, Lord Penrhyn, was determined to break the tradition of ‘bargain’ because of the autonomy it afforded the workers. He vigorously opposed unionisation, and it was the right to an effective union that became the main principle during the strike. 

  By 1902, 1300 had left the area in search of work, mainly to the south Wales coalfield. Tensions between strikers and returning workers were high, with notices being displayed in the houses of striking men bearing the words ‘Nid oes Bradwr yn y Tŷ Hwn’ (There is no traitor in this house).  Facing starvation, the quarrymen were gradually forced back to work, the atmosphere becoming increasingly severe when it became obvious that Lord Penrhyn would not compromise.

The strike was a devastating blow to the slate industry.  Penrhyn’s labour force had been decimated, and a depression in the building industry meant the gradual disintegration of slate quarrying.  


Born on this day 22nd November 1819 in Nuneaton, Warwickshire (her father was Welsh and she attended a Welsh Baptist School in Coventry)

Mary Anne Evans, known by her pen name George Eliot, was one of the leading writers of the Victorian era. She published seven novels, mainly set in provincial England. She used a male pen name to ensure her works would be taken seriously, as female authors at the time were considered incapable of writing anything other than lightweight romances.  


The Welsh language was officially spoken in the Vatican by Pope John Paul II, on  22 November 1987, as part of a beatification ceremony raising three Welsh martyrs, convicted under the penal laws of Queen Elizabeth I, to the rank of 'Blessed'.  Beatification is the penultimate stage before being declared a saint in the Catholic Church.  


President John F Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas. (J.F.K is pictured with possibly the most famous Welsh terrier in the world, Charlie, his loyal companion)

J F K's visit to Wales in 1938;

In July 1938, the 21 year old future President spent 5 days at St. Donats Castle owned by newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst in July 1938, with his father Joseph and other members of the Kennedy family.

Edward Nicholson, a member of staff at St Donat's Castle, recalled how "Mr Kennedy was a very active youngster, full of life. He swam in the pool and was an excellent swimmer. He attended mass at St David's Roman Catholic Cathedral in Charles Street, Cardiff. I shook hands with the President. He asked a lot of questions about the Welsh language and how many people in Wales spoke it. He showed a keen interest in Welsh industry, too."  


On 22nd November 1974, Helen Morgan won the Miss World beauty contest.  However, she was encouraged to resign four days after her victory on the discovery that she had an 18 month old child. In the same year, she won the Miss Wales and Miss United Kingdom titles and came second in the Miss Universe pageant.

Gaynor Madoc Leonard
11/22/13 06:28:27PM @gaynor-madoc-leonard:

A good reminder to re-read all the Eliot novels on my shelf. A great writer indeed.

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