Friday, May 27, 2011

The Welsh Congregational Church Founding Documents

Aunt Betty, mentioned below, received into her care the original founding documents of the little Welsh Congregational Church on Bowery Street in Frostburg, Maryland. It was written in the Welsh language of the late 1800s. See below.
Title page. Isn't that lovely to look at?

Now please understand that none of us speak Welsh anymore... time and distance having done their work. (However, now when I make copious spelling mistakes as I am likely to do, I will now say that I might be speaking Welsh. Who knows;)

Aunt Betty gave a copy to Mom. Mom has been to Wales and has daily email contact with a group of enthusiastic genealogists there. She put out a call to anyone willing to have a go at translating and Maureen responded!

Mom asked me to get an large envelope for her from the office so she could mail the copies to Maureen. In my gut a voice said, "no!" There has got to be a faster better way so that Mom can keep her copy.

So I whipped out my trusty cell phone (see post below about how my cell phone had just gone for a "swim") and took three pictures of the title page and first page. Then I emailed them to Mom's computer so she could forward them to Maureen.

And so that's what happened. By the time I got back to San Diego the next afternoon I found Maureen's translation from Welsh to English in my email box! Done!

Here's what Maureen wrote back:

"Hi Virginia,
Very good images. Yes I can translate, the writing is very easy to decipher. If you want to send more in this format that's fine.

The title page reads:
Independent Church,
Frostburg, Maryland,
Established in1873
Strange thing is that I have been translating the History of Independent Churches in Wales, county by county, for a volunteer project on Genuki. Could be of interest if we find where the church elders came from in Wales. I'll do the page you sent and mail it back.

What are the chances that Maureen is working on just such a project in Wales?! And of course between Mom and Aunt Betty the answers to the question, where did they come from, will be answered soon.

Church Picnic, 1935.

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