1870's Welsh Coalport Christening Mugs, Mary Gwenllian & William Lewis

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These are two wonderful matching Victorian Hand Painted Porcelain Mugs made by Coalport, each painted in coloured enamels with summer flowers. They are gilded christening mugs or antique coffee cans with fancy hand painted text in stunningly beautiful embellished script.

Victorian text on these 2 Christening mugs read:
1) Mary Gwenllian Lewis, born 17th April 1873
2) William David Robert Lewis, born 16th June 1876

Found in Public Genealogy Records:
Mary Gwenllian Lewis born in April 1873 in Dowlais, Glamorgan, Wales. Her death date is unknown, as well as if she married.
Her parents were:
David Robert Lewis 1845–1890, son of William Lewis born 1819 and Mary Lewis 1824–1903. He was a solicitor (or attorney, lawyer) born in Merthyr, Glamorgan, Wales. He died in Pontypridd, Glamorganshire, Wales. His 2 siblings were Rees Lewis, born 1842 and John Lewis, born 1852.

Her mother was Catherine Jones Lewis, born 1854, of which very little is known.

Her Siblings:
1) William David Robert Lewis 1876–1955 (other Christening Mug) was born 16 June 1876 in Lenbury, Worcestershire, England and died January 1955 in Glamorgan, Wales. He married Emily Drewitt Hilton Lewis 1879–1973 who was born 19 September 1879 in Southwark, Surrey, England and died 1973 in Forest of Dean, Cambria, Pennsylvania, United States USA. She lived 18 years past her husband William. Their 2 children were: 1. David Hilton Lewis 1912–1989 born in Wales and died 18 MAY 1989 in Stroud, Monroe, Pennsylvania, United States, America. 2. Edward Morgan Lewis 1921–1988 born 23 JUN 1921 in Bedwelty, Wales and died JAN 1988 at Bristol, Gloucestershire, England.
2) Catherine Lewis 1879–1948, no info known
Possible half siblings:
3) Elizabeth B. Lewis born 1882.
4) Gwladys Lewis born 1884
5) Gwinyfred J Lewis (Winifred) born 1886
6) Edward T Lewis born 1888
7) Edith O Lewis born 1890

Mary Gwenllian Lewis in the 1881 Wales Census
Age: 8
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1873
Relation: Daughter
Father's name: David Robert Lewis
Mother's name: Catherine Lewis
Where born: Dowlais, Glamorgan, Wales
Civil Parish: Merthyr Tydfil
Street address: 14 Morlais St
Occupation: Scholar
Sub registration district: Upper Merthyr Tydfil
Household, Age:
David Robert Lewis 35 (Solicitor, Attorney, Lawyer) born Dowlais
Catherine Lewis 27 mother, born Llandovery, Carmarthen
Mary Gwenllian Lewis 8 Scholar, born Dowlais
William David Lewis 5 Scholar, born Dowlais
Catherine Lewis 2 infant
Mary Jones 16 domestic servant

1891 Wales Census for Mary G Lewis
Age: 17
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1874
Relation: Daughter
Mother's Name: Catherine Lewis, head, living by her own means
Where born: Merthyr, Glamorgan, Wales
Civil parish: Merthyr Tydfil
Ecclesiastical parish: Dowlais, Glamorgan, Wales
House: Morlais Villa
Household Members, Name, Age:
Catherine Lewis Age 37, head
Mary G Lewis Age 17
William D R Lewis Age 14
Catherine E Lewis Age 11
Elizabeth B Lewis Age 9
Gluladys Lewis Age 7
Winifred J Lewis Age 5
Edward T Lewis Age 3
Edith D Lewis Age 1
Catherine Brice Age 16 servant
Anne Bunne Age 13 servant

Interestingly, we found record of a David Lewis killed in a Welsh mining accident, along with 80 other men in a gas explosion in Pontypridd, Glamorgan in 1885. He suddenly disappears off census records of his family between 1881 and 1891. see below:
David Lewis in the UK, Coal Mining Accidents and Deaths Index, 1878-1935
Death Age: 40
Birth Year: abt 1845
Death Date: 23 Dec 1885
Death Place: Pontypridd, Glamorgan, Wales
Occupation: Collier
Colliery: Mardy
Owner: Lockets Merthyr Steam Coal Company
Notes: Explosion of gas, 81 killed.

We cannot say this is the children's father, as confusingly, their are many Jones and Lewis family surnames in Wales at that time. It is possible her father was killed during the explosion, although it would be surprising that he would be a solicitor working down in the mines. Any further genealogy info or thoughts on this greatly appreciated.

These 2 Coalport pieces appear to have been commissioned by a fairly wealthy family, such as a solicitor might be. They are absolutely sttunning English pottery pieces, with the gilding ot gilt work at its finest. The condition is beautiful on William's mug. Mary's mug has a faint Y hairline firing line on bottom, as seen in photos. It must be scrutinized closely to be seen.

This is a stunning historical pair for 2 much loved and celebrated Lewis children. We wish these pieces could talk, and tell us more of their long 150 year old history. It is wonderful that they were still found together in Totnes, Devon, England, and we wonder what their Devon ties were? Click images to see condition in close up views. A rare and beautiful one of a kind set.

debra clifford antiques devon sold archive
Size: Both 3.5 inches high x 3.5 inches diameter by 5 inches wide w/ handle
debra clifford antiques     Welcome! We have a 100% approval policy. Also visit Debra's other 2 sites: Ancestorville, with thousands of early signed vintage lost family photos of the 19th century for genealogy, and Vintage Poster Works, a vintage antique advertising site. email Debra with any questions here. We proudly use recycled packaging when we can.

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