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 Gwynedd Archives: Caernarfon Record Office  |  Repository home page  |  Contact details

Gwynedd Archives: Caernarfon Record Office
Dinorwic Quarry records

Reference code(s): GB 0219 XD/Q

Held at: Gwynedd Archives: Caernarfon Record Office

Title: Dinorwic Quarry Records

Short Title: Dinorwic Quarry records

Creation date(s): 1809-1970

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: Information to be supplied

Name of creator(s): Dinorwic Quarries Co. Ltd


Administrative/Biographical history: Slate quarrying at Dinorwig, Caernarfonshire, dates back to the 18th century. In 1787, Thomas Assheton-Smith (1752-1828) of the Faenol estate, leased his workings to the Dinorwig Slate Company, a partnership of two solicitors, Ellis and Wright, and Mr Bridges, a merchant. By 1809, only Wright remained, but he was joined by Hugh Jones, a Dolgellau banker, and Assheton-Smith himself. In 1824, the Dinorwig Tramway was opened, and the Padarn Tramway in 1843, allowing greater amounts of slate to be transported to Port Dinorwic on the Menai Strait. Railways to Porth Penrhyn and Y Felinheli, Caernarfonshire, were completed by 1852. The Dinorwic Quarry operated fleets of iron steamers from Port Dinorwic. Messrs Duff, Herbert and Mitchell Ltd managed the steamships and ship repairs. The quarry grew to become one of the two largest slate quarries in the world, employing more than 3,500 workers. During the 20th century, however, the slate industry declined, although Dinorwic remained one of the primary sources of slate in Wales. Dinorwic Quarries Co. Ltd closed in 1969.


Scope and content/abstract: Records of Dinorwic Quarries Co. Ltd, 1809-1970, including financial records, 1809-1969; production records, 1844-1969; sales records, 1835-1970; slate shipment records, 1837-1969; wages records, 1832-1969; accident and safety records, 1884-1969; letter books, 1870-1962; correspondence, 1895-1970; records relating to the formation of the Dinorwic Quarries Co., Ltd, 1950-1954; Quarry Club records, 1861-1969; diaries kept by employees of Dinorwic Quarries, 1889-1969; quarry notices, 1888-1969; records relating to Dinorwic Dock, 1884-1905; records of the Dinorwic steamships, 1902-1958; Port Dinorwic Dry Dock records, 1829-1968; records of Messrs Duff, Herbert and Mitchell, Ltd, 1944-1954; Padarn Railway records, 1841-1961; housing records, 1901-1945; records relating to coal supplies, 1898-1958; electric lighting records, 1902-1937; brick and tile plant records, 1955-1964; plans, mostly relating to the quarry, railway, dock and ships, 1870-1969; Dinorwic publications, 1962-1969; periodicals, 1947-1965; photographs, 1889-1964; and miscellaneous papers, 1864-1970.


Language/scripts of material: English, Welsh

System of arrangement: Arranged into the following: Financial; Production; Sales; Slate shipments; Wages; Accident and safety records; Letter books; Correspondence files; Correspondence and other papers; Papers of Dinorwic Quarry Company; Quarry Club; Diaries; Quarry notices; Port Dinorwic; Steamships; Port Dinorwic dry dock; Papers of Messrs Duff, Herbert and Mitchell; Padarn Railway; Housing; Coal; Electric lights; Brick and tile plant; Plans; Dinorwic Publications; Periodicals; Photographs; and Additional material.

Conditions governing access: No restrictions

Conditions governing reproduction: Usual copyright regulations apply.

Finding aids: Hard copies of the catalogue are available in Caernarfon Record Office, the National Library of Wales and the National Register of Archives.


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: All records deposited at Caernarfon Record Office have been retained.

Accruals: Accruals are not expected

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:



Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds

Archivist's note: Compiled by Richard Burman for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Caernarfon Record Office, Dinorwic Quarry records, catalogue; Slatesite, ( viewed 16 July 2004; Richards, Alun John, Slate Quarrying in Wales (Llanrwst, 1995).

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

Date(s) of descriptions: July 2004

Dinorwic Quarries Company | Archives
Quarries and quarrying | Wales | Gwynedd
Railways | Wales | Gwynedd
Shipping | Wales | Dinorwig
Slate industry | Wales | Gwynedd | Archives

Personal names

Corporate names
Dinorwic Quarries Company
Duff, Herbert and Mitchell

Dinorwig (Wales)
Felinheli (Wales)

List of repositories  |  List of collections at Gwynedd Archives: Caernarfon Record Office  |  Repository home page  |  Contact details