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National Library of Wales
Piercy, Benjamin, papers

Reference code(s): GB 0210 PIERCY

Held at: National Library of Wales

Title: Benjamin Piercy Papers

Short Title: Piercy, Benjamin, papers

Creation date(s): [1790]-1921 (accumulated [1840s]-1921)

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: 0.259 cubic metres (107 volumes)

Name of creator(s): Benjamin Piercy and the Piercy Trustees


Administrative/Biographical history: Benjamin Piercy (1827-1888), civil engineer, was born near Trefeglwys, Montgomeryshire. He trained in the office of his father, who was a commissioner, valuer and surveyor for the inclosure of commons and for tithe commutation awards, and in 1847 became chief assistant to a surveyor and land-agent in Montgomery. Piercy was asked by Henry Robertson (1816-1888) for assistance in preparing plans for the Shrewsbury and Chester Railway Bill in 1851, and later for a railway between Oswestry and Newtown. He then went into independent practice, and in the course of his work gained a reputation as a witness in parliamentary committees, with the result that he became involved in nearly every project introducing railways into Wales. His notable engineering feats included bridges over the Severn, Mawddach and Traeth Bychan estuaries, and also the Talerddig cutting. From 1861, he became heavily involved in engineering works in Sardinia, Rome, France, India and Burma, but he returned to Wales and purchased the Marchwiel Hall estate, Denbighshire, in 1881, devoting most of the rest of his life to civil engineering projects in north Wales. He stood unsuccessfully as a parliamentary candidate for Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, in 1883, and died in London in 1888. After his death the estate was managed by the Piercy Trustees.


Scope and content/abstract: Papers, [1790]-1921, of and collected by Benjamin Piercy and his estate, relating to civil engineering projects and to the Piercy estate in Flintshire and Denbighshire. They including copies of plans of the following railways: the Wrexham, Mold and Connah's Quay; the Whitchurch, Wrexham and Mold; the Flintshire, Oswestry and Newtown; the Oswestry and Llangynog; the Denbighshire and Shropshire; the North Wales and Birkenhead; the Birkenhead, North Wales and Stafford; the Porthdinlleyn; and the Llangammarch and Neath. There is also a large number of working plans of railways in north-east Wales, particularly those for which Benjamin Piercy was engineer, as well as collections of Acts of Parliament relating to railways in England and Wales, bills, minutes of evidence, speeches, petitions and reports of Railway Commissions. The archive also includes a volume of Acts of Parliament relating to the navigation and conservancy of the river Dee, some Acts relating to north Wales waterworks, copies of correspondence, 1881-1885, between Benjamin Piercy and Henry Robertson of Pale, and minute books, 1888-1920, of the Piercy Trustees, and papers and deeds of Benjamin Piercy's estate mainly in Wrexham, and Marchwiel parish, 1881-1921.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: manuscripts (railways; Piercy estate; river Dee conservancy; miscellanea); printed material (parliamentary acts; parliamentary bills; publications relating to railways; miscellaneous); maps and plans (Piercy properties in Wrexham; Piercy properties outside Wrexham; miscellaneous properties; properties required by the Wrexham, Mold, and Connah's Quay Railway; properties required by the Wrexham and Ellesmere Railway, etc.; road alterations and extensions, etc.; miscellaneous railways; railways of North Wales and the border; Wrexham, Mold, and Connah's Quay Railway; Wrexham and Ellesmere Railway; river Dee - Chester to Connah's Quay; waterworks and water supplies, north Wales; industries in north Wales; town maps and plans; buildings, houses, etc.; Ordnance Survey maps, etc.

Conditions governing access: Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to sign the 'Modern papers - data protection' form.

Conditions governing reproduction: Usual copyright regulations apply.

Finding aids: A hard copy of the catalogue is available at the National Library of Wales.

Detailed catalogue


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: All records deposited at the National Library of Wales have been retained.

Accruals: Accruals are not expected.

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition: Deposited by Messrs James Fraser and Sons, London, 1934


Related material: National Library of Wales Benjamin Piercy Maps and Plans, and Papers of Henry Robertson of Palé.


Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds.

Archivist's note: Compiled by David Moore for the ANW project. The following sources were consulted in the compilation of this description: NLW, Schedule of Piercy Papers (Fraser Group); Dictionary of Welsh Biography down to 1940 (London, 1959)

Rules or conventions: This description follows ANW guidelines based on ISAD(G) second edition, AACR2 and LCSH.

Date(s) of descriptions: March 2003

Civil engineers | Wales
Piercy, Benjamin, | 1827-1888 | Archives
Railway engineering | Wales
Railway engineers | Wales | Archives
Railways | England | Designs and plans
Railways | Wales | Denbighshire | Designs and plans
Railways | Wales | Flintshire | Designs and plans
River conservation | Wales | Flintshire

Personal names
Piercy , Benjamin , 1827-1888
Robertson , Henry , 1816-1888

Corporate names

Dee, River (Wales and England)

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