ANW logo

Archives Network Wales

Search the collections:        Search help | Advanced search   | Browse by repository

Browse the indices: Combined(searchable) Personal names Corporate names Places Subjects



[New to Archives?]

[Family history]

[Admin menu]

List of repositories  |  List of collections at Glamorgan Archives  |  Repository home page  |  Contact details

Glamorgan Archives
Merthyr Mawr estate collection

Reference code(s): GB 0214 DMM

Held at: Glamorgan Archives

Title: Merthyr Mawr Estate Collection

Short Title: Merthyr Mawr estate collection

Creation date(s): 1662, 1730-1966

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: 0.86 cubic metres (c. 590 items)

Name of creator(s): Merthyr Mawr estate


Administrative/Biographical history: The Nicholl family of Merthyr Mawr, Glamorgan, was a junior branch of the Nicholl family of Ham, Glamorgan. John Nicholl (d 1773) of Llanmaes, Glamorgan, third son of the Rev. Iltyd Nicholl of Ham, was the father of Sir John Nicholl (1759-1838), Dean of the Court of Arches, Judge of the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, Judge of the High Court of Admiralty, 1833, and Vicar-General of the Archbishop of Canterbury, 1834, who was mainly responsible for establishing the Merthyr Mawr estate. He had a contingent interest in the estate of his godfather, the Rev. John Nicholl (d 1770), in Llantwit Major and Llantwit Fardre, and received the Ton-du estate, Glamorgan, on the death of Edward Powell in 1771. Much of the estate was built up by purchase, mainly by Sir John, including the estate and manor of Candleston; the Merthyr Mawr estate purchased Sketty Hall, Glamorgan, and other lands in Glamorgan from the trustees of Charles Bowen, in 1804, until the estate measured 4,894 acres in 1873, with an estimated annual rental of £6,565. Sir John Nicholl was succeeded by his son, John Nicholl (1797-1853), MP for Cardiff 1832-1852, Master of the Faculties and Vicar General of the province of Canterbury, 1838-1841, Judge Advocate General, 1841, and chairman of Glamorgan Quarter Sessions, 1832-1851. He married Jane Harriet, daughter of Thomas Mansell Talbot of Margam Abbey. They were succeeded by their eldest son, John Cole Nicholl (1823-1894), who in turn was succeeded by his son, John Iltyd Dillwyn Nicholl (1861-1935), and by his son Robert Iltyd Nicholl (b. 1896).


Scope and content/abstract: Family and personal papers, 1662, 1755-1935, includes letters, diaries, accounts, genealogical papers, wills and probate papers; estate papers, 1730-1966, including papers relating to the purchase of the Merthyr Mawr Estate, [c. 1755]-1808, the building of Merthyr Mawr House, 1802-1810, rentals and accounts, 1730-1842, labour journals and accounts, 1807-1875, estate management accounts and correspondence, 1808-1903, farm accounts, valuations, surveys and plans, 1774-1861, and game accounts, 1831-1966; papers relating to county affairs, 1787-1849, including papers of the Central Glamorgan Yeomanry Cavalry, including muster rolls, 1820-1831; Thomas Telford's Survey of the South Wales Mail Roads, 1824, Chairman's sessional bundles for the Glamorgan Quarter Sessions, 1832-1849, together with Quarter Sessions minutes, 1841-1847, and financial papers, 1840-1847; papers concerning Glamorgan Constabulary, 1840-1847, and lunatic asylum, 1843-1849; poll books of Cowbridge and Llantrisant boroughs, Glamorgan, 1832, and correspondence relating to Glamorgan politics and county and borough elections, 1814-1852; and legal, parliamentary and political papers of Sir John Nicholl and John Nicholl: papers of the Admiralty Courts, 1780-1843; ecclesiastical matters, including cases before the Court of Arches, 1781-1852; parliamentary reports, returns and other papers concerning ecclesiastical courts, church discipline, church rates, etc., 1812-1844; and political correspondence of Sir John Nicholl, 1798-1832, including letters about the prosecution of the war against France, 1803-1808, the resignations of the Duke of Portland, Canning and Castlereagh, 1809, and Roman Catholic emancipation, 1812-1813.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: family; estate; county affairs; and legal, parliamentary and political papers.

Conditions governing access: Restricted access. Written permission is required before the archives can be consulted. Researchers should complete the relevant form on permission to access closed records, or apply for a staff member to undertake the search.

Conditions governing reproduction: Normal Glamorgan Archives conditions apply.

Finding aids: A full version of the catalogue can be searched online at


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: All records which meet the collection policy of the Glamorgan Record Office have been retained.

Accruals: Accruals are not expected.

Archival history: This collection represents material retained by the owner after the Merthyr Mawr Estate Records (DN) were deposited in 1964. Since 1972 the papers relating to county affairs and papers relating to the Price family of Llandaff Court and Llandough Castle have been deposited. The remaining sections are still in the possession of the owner.

Immediate source of acquisition:


Related material: Further papers are held in the Glamorgan Archives: Merthyr Mawr Estate Records (DN).

Publication note: Thomas, Hilary M., Merthyr Mawr House, Mid Glamorgan: an account of the building of Sir John Nicholl's country mansion (Glamorgan Archive Service, 1983).


Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds.

Archivist's note: Compiled by Stephen Benham for the HMC/NLW Family and Estates project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Nicholas, Thomas, Annals and Antiquities of the Counties and County Families of Wales, (London, 1872); Burke's Landed Gentry, 18th ed., 3 vols, (London, 1965-1972); Glamorgan Record Office, Catalogue of the Merthyr Mawr Estate Records; Glamorgan Record Office, Catalogue of the Merthyr Mawr Estate Collection.

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

Date(s) of descriptions: March 2002; amended January 2005

Central Glamorgan Yeomanry | Records and correspondence
Estate administration | Wales | Llantwit Major
Glamorgan (Wales) | Politics and government | 19th century
Great Britain. | Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace (Glamorgan) | Archives
Local government | Wales | Glamorgan
Merthyr Mawr Estate (Wales) | Archives
Nicholl, John, | Sir, | 1759-1838 | Archives
Police | Wales | Glamorgan

Personal names
Nicholl , John , 1759-1838 , Sir
Nicholl , John , 1797-1853

Corporate names
Central Glamorgan Yeomanry Cavalry
Church of England | Court of Arches
Merthyr Mawr Estate (Wales)

Llantwit Major (Wales)
Merthyr Mawr (Wales)
Sketty (Swansea, Wales)

List of repositories  |  List of collections at Glamorgan Archives  |  Repository home page  |  Contact details