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British Industrial History

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Matthew Wayne

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Matthew Wayne (c1780-1853), iron-master and coal-owner

1780 Born in Stogursey, Somerset.

By 1806 he was living in Merthyr Tydfil. Became furnace manager for Richard Crawshay, ironmaster of Cyfarthfa Ironworks, Merthyr Tydfil

1810 Richard Crawshay thought so highly of Matthew Wayne that he left him £800 in his will.

1811 Became a partner with Joseph Bailey to purchase the lease of the ironworks in Nant-y-glo

1816 His daughter Mary was born in Merthyr.

1820 retired from the partnership with sufficient money to start a business of his own. Wayne then seems to have returned to the Cyfarthfa district.

1823 he was a freeholder at Gelli-deg, Merthyr and a prominent and generous member of the Old Meeting House at Cefn Coed y Cymer.

1827 Wayne established Gadlys Ironworks, Aberdare, in conjunction with George Rowland Morgan and Edward Morgan Williams.

c.1836 His sons started to help in management of the works.

1837 Matthew with two of his sons, Thomas Wayne and William Watkin Wayne, and the David family formed the Merthyr-Aberdare Steam Coal Co and started to sink the colliery.

After establishing iron works and sinking the first deep coal mine in Aberdare, Glam., he made his home in Glandare House.

1853 Died.


A writer in the Cardiff and Merthyr Guardian, 12 March 1853, commenting on the death of Matthew Wayne , claimed that 'Wayne was the first man that ever sent coal to Cardiff from the Aberdare basin, being thus the first to open that traffic from which this port (Cardiff). ... the T.V.R. and the parish of Aberdare have received an impetus which is quite unparalleled in the history of the coal trade. To him, more than to anybody else, Aberdare owes unquestionably its present prosperity, as he it was who first found out and brought to the notice of the public, the valuable properties of its steam coal'

See Also


Sources of Information

  • Welsh Biography Online [1]