David Morgan (1800-1895)

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David Morgan
David morgan aged 88 1888
Sex: Male
Birth: St Brides Major?, Glamorgan, Wales
Baptism: 04/11/1798, Llandyfodwg, Glamorgan, Wales
Death: 24/2/1895, Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
Father: Thomas Morgan
Mother: Ann Jones
Spouse/Partner: Catherine Jones
Marriage: 31/10/1823 Coity, Glamorgan, Wales
2nd Spouse: Ann?
2nd Marriage: c1841-c1850

Some information from ancestors has David being born or baptised on the 5th April 1800 in St Brides Major, Glamorganshire to parents Thomas and Ann. I have not located a baptism record to confirm this.

David's death certificate names his parents as Thomas and Annie Morgan. I have located the marriage of a Thomas Morgan to Ann Jones in St John's Church at Swansea on 24th May 1795. If these are his parents, David was baptised on the 4th November 1798, in the parish church at Llandyfodwg, his mother's maiden name recorded on this occasion as 'John'. I suspect that this is David and his parents, because a Thomas Morgan of the same parents was baptised in the same church, on the same day, indicating twins. Twins are a regular genealogical occurance in David's descendents.

No further siblings have been located at this stage, and what happened to twin brother Thomas is currently unknown.


David was of the parish of Llantrisant and a bachelor when he married Catherine Jones of the parish of Coity, spinster, on the 31st October 1823. Witnesses to the marriage were Thomas Jones (a possible relation to Catherine) and Jenkin Williams. The minister was Henty Phillips.

His occupation was shoe maker, bootmaker and cordwainer.

David and Catherine had 9 children together, born in the towns of Bridgend, Coychurch and Llanwonno. Two of the children died in infancy (Catherine and Margaret). Catherine died herself when the youngest child was only two years old, on 18th April 1841, aged 35, at Nolton. She was buried in the local Nolton parish church where the two infant girls were buried.

In the 1841 census, David is recorded at Llantirsant, Glamorgan, with sons Thomas, John, David and William listed as colliers, and the remaining children. He was also employed as a collier at this time.

Second marriageEdit

By 1851, David had remarried a woman by the name of Ann (surname currently unknown) who had been born in Coity. They were living with David's son's Joseph and Richard at Coity during the census.

Son Evan was killed in a mining accident on the 13th February 1854 at Aberdare, when aged only 20 years of age. He was killed in a coal mine by a fall of rock from the roof. The mine was owned by Werfa, Nixon and Co.

Voyage to AustraliaEdit

By 1857, David's second wife had died. He and his son David decided to emigrate to Australia on board the ship "Dragoon". The ship departed England from Liverpool and arrived in Victoria on 29/8/1857. David and his son came by unassisted passage.

The voyage of the "Dragoon" was notorious for claims made in the Williamstown Police Court by fellow passengers that the berth's for single men and women below decks were not separated. Their claims were heard on the 2nd September 1857 before Lieutenant Pasco, Chairman, and Mr Verdon. The proceedings were reported in The Argus newspaper on 3/9/1857.

The Captain of the ship, G. B. Weston, claimed ignorance of the issue. He was fined the sum of 25 pounds 10 shillings in costs. A ship's mate was also fined 10 pounds.

Of the 340 passengers on board, only 140 made an appearance at the court. It is not known at this time whether David Morgan presented his case. Those that did attend received 3 shillings and 6 pence in costs.

An article that appeared in the Argus newspaper a few days later pointed the blame directly at the immigration officers in Liverpool for not checking the berthing arangements before the voyage departed. Then, on the 10th September, an article in reply stated that Mr McCulloch of the Legislative assembly had said that the 'Dragoon' was not a Government emigrant ship and that there were "consequently no powers to enforce penalties for the irregularities of which proof had been adduced."


Father and son moved inland to the Ballarat area where they took advantage of the Gold Rush occuring at the time. Progress must have been slow at the start, but by 1862, they appear to have had some success. Eventually, six of David's son's and one daughter would all move out to Australia to join them.

David's success in the Gold Rush era does not appear to have lasted into old age. He died of old age asthenia at the Benevolant Asylum in the city of Ballarat. He was a labourer at the time and was buried in the Old Cemetery Ballarat, section 2DN number 11 with 5 great grand children. He had outlived six of his own children.

His death certificate recorded his age of death as 95, but if the new baptism information on his is correct, he was 97 years old.


Name Birth Death
Children of David and Catherine Morgan

Thomas 23/12/1824
Old Castle, Bridgend, Glamorgan

John 10/4/1827
Old Castle, Bridgend, Glamorgan

Catherine 5/1/1828
Old Castle, Bridgend, Glamorgan

David 5/1/1828
Old Castle, Bridgend, Glamorgan
Williamstown, Victoria

William 8/6/1830
Bridgend, Glamorgan
Williamstown, Victoria

Mary 1832
Clifton Hills, Victoria

Evan 1834
Coychurch, Glamorgan
Aberdare, Glamorgan

Joseph 15/3/1837
Llanwonno, Glamorgan
Prahan, Victoria

Margaret Jun quarter 1838
Bridgend, Glamorgan

Richard 1839
Llanwonno, Glamorgan
Swansea, Glamorgan


  • Baptism and burial records for Glamorgan
  • Births, deaths and marriages information for Glamorgan and Victoria
  • 1841 & 1851 Wales census
  • Passenger lists for Victoria
  • Cemtery records for Victoria
  • Information from Paul Morgan
  • The Argus newspaper, 3/9/1857, 7/9/1857, & 10/9/1857

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