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The South Wales Record Society

The South Wales Record Society was established in 1982 and exists to publish a regular series of texts and other works relating to the history of South Wales, and in particular to the historic counties of Glamorgan and Monmouthshire.

Such publications allow original source materials that would otherwise only be accessible in archives and libraries to be examined by a wider readership. Each text is provided with a scholarly introduction, notes, bibliography, and other glossaries and appendices which enable the original source to be placed in its historical context.

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The basis of membership and the annual membership fee are changing from 1 April 2015. Find out more on our membership page

Recent publications

27. The Diaries of Margaret Penderel Jones of Garth, 1871 to 1897. Edited by Peter Jackson.

Margaret Jones of Garth House, near Pontardawe, kept a series of diaries over a twenty-year period, recording events of significance in her life as a small landowner in the Upper Swansea Valley.

In this book, the diaries are transcribed in their entirety with an introduction and comprehensive index by the editor. It was launched on 5 July 2014 at the Arts Centre, Pontardawe.


26. War Underground: Memoirs of a Bevin Boy in the South Wales Coalfield, by Edward Wakelin.

The first-hand account of a Dorset-born Bevin Boy working underground in South Wales during the Second World War.

The author, Michael Edmonds, speaks to those attending the launch at Pontypridd Museum, 20 April 2013. He is flanked by the editor Peter Wakelin and Kim Howells who provided the foreword. Listen to editor, Peter Wakelin talking to BBC's Vaughan Roderick about the book and its author.
Michael Edmonds sadly passed away on 30 March 2014. His obituary in the Guardian can be read online here.

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20. In Conversation with Napoleon Bonaparte: J. H. Vivian's Visit to the Island of Elba, edited by Ralph A. Griffiths.
An elaborate series of events to commemorate the exile of Napoleon Bonaparte on the Mediterranean island of Elba during 1814-15 is being held on this beautiful island in 2014-15 (www.napoleoneimperatoreelba2014.it). At their heart is the Emperor himself and a recreation of the life which he and his companions led while in captivity.

A number of British politicians, industrialists and others visited the island in these months in the hope of meeting the Emperor, and among them was a young man, John Henry Vivian, from Cornwall and Swansea, who was beginning his remarkable career as the most important copper master of modern Swansea. Vivian obtained a lengthy audience with Napoleon and after his return to Britain published his recollections, including fascinating details of his conversation with the Emperor. As a young industrialist, Vivian also visited the famous iron mines on Elba and recorded the rest of his European tour to industrial sites in Germany, Poland and Hungary. His memoir is republished in this volume with many illustrations. It is a valuable historical record.


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