Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Forgotten Radnorians

When he died, aged 49, in 1831, following an operation in Shrewsbury to remove a cancer from his left hand, over 5000 inhabitants of Newtown, Montgomeryshire attended the funeral of local Baptist minister John Jones. Indeed factories and shops in the town were closed to honour a man who was described as one of most popular Baptist preachers in Wales.

John Jones was born in Llandrindod to Radnorshire parents in 1782 - his father was from Aberedw (John's brother Evan farmed Danycoed in that parish as late as 1876) and his mother was a Watkins from Trefonnen. In 1807 John Jones married Elizabeth Jones of Woodcastle Farm, Newbridge-on-Wye in Llanyre parish church. By 1811 John had given up farming and the couple, who would have seven children, moved from Llanyre to Newtown, where Jones laboured as the pastor of the Baptist church for the next twenty years.

According to his obituary in Greal y Bedyddwyr John Jones was a fluent preacher in both English and Welsh. He is buried at Rhydyfelin Baptist Church in Aberhafesp.

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