The North Wales Quarrymen, 1874-1922

Author(s): R. Merfyn Jones

Language: English

Genre(s): Welsh Interest

Series: Studies in Welsh History

  • February 2015 · 392pages · 216x138mm

  • ·Paperback - 9781783161751

About The Book

On a Saturday morning in November 1865, between 1,200 and 1,500 men gathered above the small town of Bethesda, to launch a society which they called the United Society of Welsh Quarrymen. Although there had been earlier revolts of quarrymen, this was the first recorded attempt to organise a trade union. The society failed almost as soon as it was started but an idea had been planted and despite the most strenuous efforts of its opponents, it was not to be uprooted. This book is about the struggle of quarrymen to organise and ‘combine’ in the slate quarries and mines of North Wales, and particularly in the giant Penrhyn quarries. It was often a battle for survival, fought in very distinctive communities, and the struggle witnessed some of the most bitter and dramatic disputes in the history of the British working class.


Part 1: The Roots of Conflict
1.The Slate Industry and Gwynedd Society
2.The Quarrymen
3.Beliefs and Attitudes
4.The Quarry
5.The Union, 1874-1900
Part 2: The Conflict
6.Dinorwg and Llechwedd
7.The First Penrhyn Lock-out
8.The Penrhyn Lock-out 1900-1903
Part 3: Aftermath
10.The Union, 1900-1922
11.‘Politics Obtain Here’

About the Author(s)

R. Merfyn Jones

Before his retirement, R. Merfyn Jones was Professor of Welsh History and Vice-Chancellor at Bangor University.

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