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National Library of Wales
Chappell, Edgar, papers

Reference code(s): GB 0210 EDGELL

Held at: National Library of Wales

Title: Edgar Chappell Papers

Short Title: Chappell, Edgar, papers

Creation date(s): 1772-1951 (accumulated 1901-1951)

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: 0.306 cubic metres (29 boxes, 1 folder)

Name of creator(s): Edgar Chappell


Administrative/Biographical history: Alderman Edgar Leyshon Chappell (1879-1949) was born at Ystalyfera, Glamorgan, the son of a shoemaker and commercial traveller. He was educated at local schools. From 1898 to 1900, he received training as a teacher at University College, Cardiff, and by 1910 he was headmaster of an elementary school at Rhiwfawr, Pontardawe, Glamorgan. A year later he gave up teaching to work full time as a campaigner for housing reform and other social problems, initially assisting figures such as Prof. Henry Stanley Jevons with his investigations into the economic conditions in south Wales and the Garden Village movement. A pamphlet of Chappell's early work on housing, Gwalia's Homes, was published in 1911. During the First World War he was appointed to serve on a number of Government inquiries, including the Industrial Unrest Commission for Wales in 1917 and the Ministry of Agriculture's Enquiry into Wages and Conditions in South Wales in 1918. From 1918 to 1921 he was an Inspector for the Ministry of Health's Housing Committee and in 1921 was appointed Secretary of the South Wales Regional Survey Committee of the Ministry of Health. Together with A. J. Lovat-Fraser, he published a pamphlet entitled Pithead and Factory Baths in 1920. From 1912, Edgar Chappell was Secretary of the Welsh Housing Association, later called Welsh Housing and Development Association. He edited the Association's Yearbook, 1916-1918, and published pamphlets on housing and town planning. He also lectured on these subjects and contributed numerous articles to the press. Edgar Chappell was a life-long Socialist and was active in local government. In 1921 he was elected to represent Whitchurch as an independent member on the Cardiff Rural District Council, and, in 1930, he became its Chairman. The following year he was elected to Glamorgan County Council and later became an alderman. He wrote several pamphlets on local government in Wales, among them The Government of Wales and Wake up Wales: a Survey of Home Rule Activities in 1943. He had a keen interest in local history, and published The History of the Port of Cardiff (1939), Historic Melingriffith (1940), and Old Whitchurch (1945). In the course of his research he collected papers relating to Melingriffith Tinplate Works, Whitchurch, Glamorgan, and to Sir Daniel Lleufer Thomas (1863-1940) for a biography (Thomas was a magistrate for Rhondda and Pontypridd, with interests in the history of Carmarthenshire, housing and town planning).


Scope and content/abstract: Papers of Edgar Leyshon Chappell, 1772-1951, including housing and public health records, 1901-1930; records relating to the South Wales Regional Survey Committee, 1920-1921; Industrial Unrest Commission records, 1904-1917; Agricultural Wages Board enquiry and research records, [c. 1918]-1940; records relating to local government and post-war reconstruction, 1891-1945; records of Melingriffith Tinplate Works, 1772-1948; papers relating to Daniel Lleufer Thomas, 1919-1941; scrapbooks, 1910-1944; and newspaper cuttings, 1896-1923.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: housing and public health; South Wales Regional Survey Committee; Industrial Unrest Commission; Agricultural Wages Board Enquiry; Local Government and Post-war reconstruction; Melingriffith Tinplate Works; scrapbooks; newspaper cuttings; Daniel Lleufer Thomas; and miscellaneous.

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. The catalogue can be accessed online.

Detailed catalogue


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: All records have been retained

Accruals: Accruals are not expected

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition: Donated by Edgar Leyshon Chappell, in 1940.


Related material: Further papers are NLW, Facs 913. There is a copy of Chappell's biography of Sir Daniel Lleufer Thomas in NLW, Sir Daniel Lleufer Thomas Papers.


Note: Title supplied from content of fonds. The archive includes 18th-century documents relating to Melingriffith Tinplate works collected by Chappell in his research.

Archivist's note: Compiled by Annette Strauch for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: NLW, Schedule of Edgar Chappell Papers; Y Bywgraffiadur Cymreig, 1941-1950 (London, 1970); Melingriffith Tin Works website (, viewed 10 October 2003.

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

Date(s) of descriptions: October 2003; revised May 2005

Chappell, Edgar L. | (Edgar Leyshon), | 1879-1949 | Archives
Industrial relations | Wales, South
Local government | Wales
Postwar reconstruction | Wales
Public health | Wales | Glamorgan
Public health | Wales | Monmouthshire
Tinplate industry | Wales | Whitchurch, Cardiff

Personal names
Chappell , Edgar L. (Edgar Leyshon) , 1879-1949
Thomas , D. Lleufer (Daniel Lleufer) , 1863-1940

Corporate names
Agricultural Wages Board for England and Wales
Great Britain | Commission of Enquiry into Industrial Unrest
Great Britain | Ministry of Health. | South Wales Regional Survey Committee
Melingriffith Iron and Tinplate Works

Glamorgan (Wales)

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