Dictionary of Welsh Biography


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WILLIAMS , JAMES ( 1790 - 1872 ), cleric ;

b. in 1790 (christened 26 July ), son of John Williams ( 1740 - 1826 ) of Treffos , Llansadwrn , Anglesey , rector of Llanddeusant , Llangaffo , and Llanfair-yng-Nghornwy John Williams was the brother of Thomas Williams ( 1737 - 1801 ) of Llanidan , and his wife was one of the Vincent family . James Williams entered Jesus College , Oxford , in 1807 ; graduated in 1810 ; was a Fellow of the college , 1813-22 ; and took his B.D. in 1820 . He was curate of Llanfair P. G. and Penmynydd , 1814-21 ; then succeeded his father in the three parishes which the latter resigned in 1821 . He was promoted chancellor of Bangor cathedral in 1851 . He d. 24 March 1872 , and was buried at Llanfair-yng-Nghornwy . James Williams was a ‘ squarson ’ of the old school, a justice of the peace , very well off, and highly respected. He was interested in agriculture , and contributed notes to John Owen ( 1808 - 1876 ) of Tyn-llwyn 's book on cattle breeding ( 1869 ). He was a zealous and generous supporter of the national eisteddfod which he rarely failed to attend. Moreover, it was he who prepared the way for ( Sir ) John Rhys — at that time a schoolmaster in Anglesey — to go to Oxford . His daughter, Louisa Mary , m. Sir Andrew Crombie Ramsay ( 1814 - 1891 ) the geologist (see D.N.B. ) who first gave the name ‘Cambrian’ to one of the earth's strata; Ramsay was buried at Llansadwrn .

Sources:

  • J. E. Griffith , Pedigrees of Anglesey and Carnarvonshire Families (1914) , 68;
  • Foster , Alumni Oxonienses ;
  • Bangor Manuscript at University College North Wales Library, Bangor 6457 at U.C.N.W.;
  • R. Hughes , Enwogion Môn / Anglesey worthies (1770) .

Author:

Emeritus Professor Robert Thomas Jenkins, C.B.E., D.Litt., Ll.D., F.S.A., (1881-1969), Bangor



He had a brother, JOHN WILLIAMS ( 1784 - 1876 ) of Treffos , who went to Eton and Jesus College , Oxford (he did not graduate); he was called to the Bar from Lincoln's Inn in 1809 , was receiver-general for North Wales , and for many years was chairman of the Anglesey quarter sessions . One of his grandsons was


Sir RALPH CHAMPNEYS WILLIAMS ( 1848 - 1927 )

who was b. at Aber rectory , 9 March 1848 , son of the Rev. Thomas Norris Williams , and was educated at Rossall . His career was romantic. From 1884 to 1906 he held responsible positions in Bechuanaland , South Africa , Gibraltar , and Barbados . In 1906 he was appointed governor of the Windward Islands , and from 1909 to 1913 was governor of Newfoundland . In 1913 he published his interesting autobiography, How I became a Governor . He d. 22 June 1927 .

[ James Williams and his wife were most active supporters of the Anglesey life-boats ; and Williams received a gold medal ( 1835 ) for personal bravery in rescue work. See Aled Eames in Trans. Angl. Antiq. Soc. , 1957 , 20-5.]

Sources:

  • J. E. Griffith , loc. cit.;
  • the autobiography;
  • Who was who?

Author:

Emyr Gwynne Jones, M.A., (1911-72), Bangor

Published date: 1959