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National Library of Wales
Owen, Owen, manuscripts

Reference code(s): GB 0210 MSOWOW

Held at: National Library of Wales

Title: Owen Owen Manuscripts

Short Title: Owen, Owen, manuscripts

Creation date(s): [1878]-1910

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: 6 volumes

Name of creator(s): Owen Owen; Owen Owen Limited

CONTEXT

Administrative/Biographical history: Owen Owen, draper and property developer, was born on 13 October 1847 at Cwmrhaeadr near Machynlleth, the son of a tenant farmer. He was educated at the Wesleyan College, Taunton, and in 1860 was placed as apprentice at his uncle Samuel Evans's linen drapery business in Bath. In 1868 he moved to Liverpool to set up his own drapery business in London Road. By 1873 he had over one hundred and twenty employees - most of whom were from Wales - and a quarter of an acre of floor space. Owen's was one of the first major retailers to introduce a weekly half day holiday for staff and by 1900 he had set up the Owen Owen Trust to help retired employees. During the 1880s Owen began investing in other enterprises, including the North American railways. He also helped his own family members to establish their own businesses. In 1889 he became director of Evans & Owen Ltd in Bath, the business at which he had started out. Following his marriage in 1891 Owen moved to London while continuing to supervise his Liverpool store, which, by the early twentieth century, was to become one of the largest of its kind in northern England. Around this time he became involved in numerous property transactions in London, particularly concerning other department stores; he was eventually to become director of both Bon Marché and John Barnes & Co. Owen purchased Plas Mariandir in Penmaenmawr, Caernarvonshire, in 1896, the Tan-y-foel estate, Penmaenmawr, in 1902 and the Garthgwynion estate near Machynlleth in 1906. Throughout his life Owen was supportive of Welsh causes, particularly in the field of education and the arts. He was influential in both Liverpool and London Welsh societies and was a member of the Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion from 1886. Owen died of cancer at his London home on 27 March 1910; his ashes were scattered on the family grave in Machynlleth.

CONTENT

Scope and content/abstract: Account books and ledgers, [1878]-1910, of Owen Owen, draper, of Liverpool and London, containing mainly receipts, disbursements, balance sheets and details of rents of properties in Montgomeryshire, Caernarvonshire, Liverpool and London.

ACCESS AND USE

Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement: Arranged according to NLW MSS reference numbers: NLW MSS 23080-23084, 23808.

Conditions governing access: No restrictions.

Conditions governing reproduction: Usual copyright laws apply.

Finding aids: Descriptions of NLW MSS 23080-4 are based on those in Handlist of Manuscripts in the National Library of Wales, Volume IX (Aberystwyth, 2003), which includes a detailed list of contents.

ARCHIVAL INFORMATION

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

Accruals: Accruals are not expected.

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition: Donated by Mr J. A. H. Norman (grandson of Owen Owen) of Eccleston, Cheshire, in January 1993 (NLW MSS 23080-4) and July 2000 (NLW MS 23808i & iiE).

ALLIED MATERIALS

Publication note: David Wyn Davies, Owen Owen: Victorian Draper (Aberystwyth, 1984); David Wyn Davies, Owen Owen: Victorian Draper, A Post Script ([?Aberystwyth], [?2001]).

DESCRIPTION NOTES

Note: Title based on contents.

Archivist's note: Description compiled by Bethan Ifan for the retrospective conversion project of NLW MSS and revised by Rhys Morgan Jones. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Handlist of Manuscripts in the National Library of Wales, Volume IX (Aberystwyth, 2003); David Wyn Davies, Owen Owen: Victorian Draper (Aberystwyth, 1984); David Wyn Davies, Owen Owen: Victorian Draper, A Post Script ([?Aberystwyth], [?2001])

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

Date(s) of descriptions: February 2009 and July 2011


INDEX ENTRIES
Subjects
Account books
Owen Owen Limited | Archives
Owen, Owen, | 1847-1910 | Archives
Selling | Draperies | England | Liverpool
Tailors | England | Liverpool

Personal names
Owen , Owen , 1847-1910

Corporate names
Garthgwynion (Isygarreg, Montgomeryshire, Wales : Estate)
Owen Owen Limited
Tan-y-Foel (Penmaenmawr, Caernarvonshire, Wales : Estate)

Places
Liverpool (England)

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