Volume 14, Number 2 The old and the new are flourishing in in Cornwall. Delabole Slate and the the Good Energy windfarm are side by side in the village of Delabole, located on the north shore of Cornwall. See pages 6,7 and 8 for more detaills on this unique village. Delabole Slate has been operating as a slate works for the past 1000 years. It is England’s oldest working slate quarry. Several smaller quarries were combined in 1841 to form The Delabole Slate Company, which was finally liquidated in 1977. After a short management under corporate hands, the operations have continued as a private local company since 1999. Besides serving local needs, the company now hopes to link with tourism through a visitor center. This would be of special interest to the Cornish slatemen that moved elsewhere, and particularly to those of our Cornish Cousins in the Pen Argyle area of Pennsylvania. We appreciate the company's permission to allow us to reproduce here the picture from their website. Program: Ringwood Iron Mines Speaker: Ralph Colfax, President North Jersey Highlands Historical Society The North Jersey Highlands Historical Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and interpreting New Jersey history and the rich local history of the North Jersey Highlands Region. For over 50 years, the Society has published the Highlander, a scholarly journal of regional history, as well as books, pamphlets and maps. We have also funded various historic restoration projects, produced annual conferences, field trips, exhibits and historical reenactments. The Society also operates the gift shop at Ringwood Manor and maintains at Ringwood Manor a historical reference library of some renown. 13th Annual Meeting On Saturday, March 1, CHSE celebrated Saint Piran Day with a Cornish cream tea with orange scones, sausage rolls, heavy cake, cucumber sandwiches and clotted cream. We also had our usual Rocky’s Port Oram pasties. Twenty one members attended the meeting where we accepted the Nominating Committee’s report and installed the following officers: President Joan Iva Wheeler 1st Vice President Margaret Carne Since we were unable to fill the 2nd VP position, we have separated the membership record keeping from the 2nd VP role. Joan Wheeler has agreed to continue with that duty for the current year. We are now seeking a 2nd VP to fill the member services for the remainder of this year. Since we need greeters for our meetings, Shirley O’Brien and Jacklyn Gilbert have volunteered to take on that role for the June meeting. President’s Message Joan Iva Wheeler It is a great honor and privilege to be writing this, my first message as your President. From that wonderful Saturday several years ago when I first learned about the CHSE, I knew immediately I was interested in membership. I had stopped to pick up pastys at Rocky’s Pasty Shoppe for my Mom and her friend at their nursing home. It was then that I met Barry and Art who were picking up the pasty order for the CHSE meeting’s lunch. They were easily identified as they were wearing their CHSE shirts. Both were so very welcoming when I identified my Cornish heritage. They invited me back to the meeting at the church and I have been a member ever since. The devotion and knowledge of all to our great Cornish Heritage started by the founding members in 1995 has been a very enlightening experience to me and serving as your President is my humble honor. My goals for CHSE are to continue all the great programs and to ask each member to bring one new to the September 2008 meeting to share this same knowledge and devotion I found on my first visit. Thank you again for your trust. CHSE has lost a great friend. As this issue of the Cornish Crier goes to press, we were saddened to hear of the passing of Martin Trengove on Thursday, May 8. Our beloved Martin was one of the founding members of CHSE and has served the organization in many ways since its inception in 1995. We send our condolences to his widow, Edith and his family. We will publish a more detailed tribute to Martin in the next issue of the Cornish Crier. Past, Present and Future of Mt. Hope Miners’ Church A Power Point presentation by: Bonnie-Lynn Nadzeika, Director, Morris County Historical Society Mark Texel, Director of Historic Sites for the Morris County Park Commission Reported by Anne Stephens The Mt. Hope Miners’ Church is located just off Interstate 80 and only a few miles from the Rockaway Townsquare Mall, yet few people are aware of the industry that was once the center of community life in the Rockaway area. The focus of the first half of the program was on the history of the church and the social impact the mining industry had on Morris County. The Morris County iron industry began in Mine Hill in 1713 with the opening of the Dickerson Mine. A few years later, in 1722, industrialists Jackson and Hurd began buying up property in the Dover area. In 1747, Boonton began its own iron works. Moving ahead to 1770, John Jacob Faesch purchased 6000 acres near his mansion in Mt. Hope for his iron works. This is the area where we locals have always referred to as the place New Jersey made cannon balls for General Washington. By the 1790-1810 era, there were over 22 iron forges in the Rockaway/Dover area. Soon other Morris County areas, including Morristown and Chester, developed more iron works, mines, forges and furnaces. During the 1800s, the Morris Canal and later the railroads were built to take the ore to market. Morris County’s great iron ore industrial era began. The Mt. Hope Mining Company, as well as many other companies needed to import experienced hard rock miners to operate their mines. Many of these were Cornish miners and ancestors of CHSE members. My own great grandfather, Edward Rodda was one of them. He was enumerated in the 1870 Federal Census as living in Mt. Hope and working as a miner. The mining company built mine company towns for the Cornish miners who brought their families with them. In 1868 the Mt. Hope Mining Company participated in the erection of the Mt. Hope Miners’ Church. Since a group of Cornish Methodists had already been holding services in the mine captain’s home, the church soon became the Mt. Hope Methodist Church with 140 members. In those early days, the churches needed to be within walking distance from the members' homes, so many small churches were built. Time moved on with increasing complexity into the early 1900s when the iron ore boom began to bust. The surplus of cheaper iron ore from mines in Michigan and other places out west dropped the price of iron. The last of the mines closed one by one. Problems first came with the great depression of the 1930s, then World War II which was followed the great post war prosperity. It was no more 'a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage.' It was beefsteak on the grill and two car families. The automobile enabled the Mt. Hope Methodists and others to easily travel five to ten miles on a Sunday to go to church. Also, the Mt. Hope community changed and by 1978 the church had fewer than twenty member families. The church closed. The finalization came when, in 1984, the Northern New Jersey Annual Conference of the Methodist Church voted to ratify the decision of the local church to close the doors of the Mt. Hope Miners’ Church. It was the end of an era. Public Perception Goals: To offer a reflection of the time of New Jersey and Morris County’s industrial prowess To preserve the history of the church as a base of community life Connections between the church and the park Location across the street from the Ford Faesch House One half mile from the New Leonard Mine Close proximity to Mt Hope Pond Complex and trails of Mt Hope Historical Park Archeological treasure trove The church is on the original site significance Challenges Current condition--currently closed Lack of visitor amenities Quarry traffic—especialy during summer and fall Funding for rehabitalization and operation Located within the Highlands Bill Region Plans Restore exterior to 1870s-1880s era Rehabilitate sanctuary in main block and wing Resourse listed on both state and National Register of Historical Sites Clean up four acres of land Great archeological potential Interpret mining history in original context New recreational and educational programming Collaboration with local organizations Place for community gatherings Create sustainable programming 2008 goals—continue with present plan Continue to secure funding sources Pursue state and national registration nominations for the resource Implement program of archeological investigation Involve local residents in programs Continue Mt. Hope Mine Task Force Hold a Mt. Hope Revival Day In the first article we wrote on Mt. Hope and the Morris County Historical Park, (Cornish Crier—Dec. 2005) we included a comment by a long term resident of the Mt. Hope/Teabo area, CHSE member, Ecla Wellington. “I would like to see a ‘Cornish Cookery’ with Cornish pasties and saffron buns.” Maybe Ecla’s dream will come true. CHSE members Margaret Carne, Robert Carlyon and Anne Stephens attended this presentation. “DELABOLE WINDFARM, CORNWALL, UK.” Written by Ray Wordon of Delabole, Cornwall, especially for the Cornish Crier The village of Delabole is situated on the wind-blown north coast of Cornwall. It is about a mile inland and at six hundred feet above sea level, is the third highest village in the county. From one direction it stands exposed to the westerly winds coming in from the Atlantic Ocean and from the other, easterlies, originating from continental Europe and beyond. For centuries traditional industries in the area have been farming and slate quarrying. Competition from less durable but cheaper slate quarried elsewhere has seen the quarry workforce drop over the years to less than a tenth of what it was in it’s heyday. A similar decline in the prosperity of British agriculture has meant that in recent years more and more farmers have been looking at various means of diversifying away from their core business of farming. There is nothing new about harnessing wind power to create energy. Millers have used it to grind corn for centuries. The concept of using it on a commercial scale to generate electricity has, however, been totally new to the United Kingdom until recent times. There have been instances where small-scale wind turbines had been used to provide power for individual dwellings in isolated locations, but little more than that. Today, politicians and scientists commonly use phrases like “global warming” and “greenhouse gases” when talking about the adverse effects on our environment caused by the continued use of fossil fuels to provide our main sources of energy. Until the early 1990s, though, there wasn’t so much concern as to how our planet was going to be preserved for future generations to enjoy. As part of the privatisation of the Electricity Boards by the Thatcher Government in 1990, the 12 newly created Electricity Supply Companies were obliged to subsidise the production of energy by renewable means, making wind generation a viable economic proposition. Here in Cornwall, a farmer had the foresight to recognise how important the use of renewable assets was going to be as a means of combating climate change and protecting the earth from irreversible damage in the years to come. Peter Edwards and his family farmed at Deli Farm, which is about a mile from the village of Delabole and some 200 feet higher. The Edwards family formed a company, “Windelectric”, with the aim of creating the first commercial windfarm in the United Kingdom. Detailed plans were drawn up for the erection of several wind-powered turbines at Deli Farm. When news of the scheme became public, it was initially received with much suspicion and from some quarters, hostility on the grounds of the visual impact the turbines would have on their surroundings in an area already designated as being of outstanding natural beauty. At 150 feet tall, they would dominate the landscape for miles around. Concerns were voiced about how much noise the blades would make and whether they would cause interference with TV signals to neighbouring houses. After detailed consultation with the local community, however, fears were allayed and the district planning authority in August 1991 granted permission for the plans to be implemented. Work on the site commenced at the end of the same month. There were ten turbines, of Danish design and manufacture, each one standing over 100 feet tall and topped by three rotor arms of over 110 feet in diameter. The turbines were positioned about 900 feet apart to minimise energy loss due to turbulence. So that normal farming activities could be carried on around them without undue hindrance, no roads were laid on the site, all cables buried underground and the turbines carefully positioned in existing hedge lines. Also, to meet the conditions of the planning authority, all the turbines had to be situated at least 325 yards from the nearest human habitation. The construction work was completed in very short time and the last turbine was connected to the National Grid via an existing local high voltage sub-station in December 1991. Since then the windfarm has produced an output of 12 million kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, which is the approximate consumption of nearly 3000 average homes. In other words it provides enough energy to satisfy the needs of a small town. Producing the same amount of electricity by normal methods, about 2000 tonnes of oil or 5000 tonnes of coal would have to be burned each year, pumping 12,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide and 120 tonnes of sulphur and nitrous oxide into the atmosphere. Nothing stands still, however. “Windelectric” is now part of a group called “Good Energy” which is proposing major changes and improvements to the windfarm at Delabole in the very near future. After more than fifteen years, technology has moved on. Plans are on-going for the existing ten turbines to be replaced by six new-generation machines that will stand twice the height and provide more than double the capacity of the existing ones. It is calculated that during it’s lifetime over one million tonnes of CO2 emissions will be saved by the site compared to that produced by fossil fuel power stations. Even so, windfarms are not universally accepted as the way forward for energy production. There are many detractors on the grounds of efficiency by comparison to other methods, unsightliness, noise, interference with military and television signals as well as potential danger to bird life. “Good Energy” has taken all this into consideration and has consulted very closely with appropriate environmental and planning authorities as well as local residents when formulating plans for what they term as the “repowering” at Delabole. Having lived with the windfarm on their doorstep for so long now, the people of Delabole are not likely to be unduly troubled by the proposed upgrade as and when it comes to pass. To most locals the turbines are now almost as much part of the landscape as their world famous quarry. In actual fact, windfarms are becoming increasingly familiar in other parts of Cornwall and throughout the country as a whole as the search for more environmentally friendly means of generating electricity gathers pace. Wind power, wave power and hydro-electric power are just a few of the technologies being trialed and evaluated as the UK strives to meet it’s target of producing 10% of it’s total energy requirements by non-fossil means by the year 2010. And the winds of change are finally beginning to blow through the United States as well. Almost in parallel to the Edwards family in Delabole, a man in the small town of Roscoe, Texas, looking to augment his income from farming by other means, recognised the potential, both economic and environmental, of wind power and opened the biggest windfarm in the world to date, comprising over 600 turbines. Delabole can never hope to emulate that, but it’s place in history is assured thanks to the vision and enterprise of an ordinary farmer who saw the opportunity presented by the exposed location of his land and seized it with both hands About the author: Ray Worden lives in Delabole in north Cornwall, home of the famous slate quarry and now, the UK’s first commercial windfarm. At our request, he has written this article especially for the Cornish Crier. As photography is one of his hobbies, he has taken all of the windfarm photos in the Crier. Thanks, Ray. Also a thank you to Rebecca Brown of Good Energy for her assistance. Catherine Lorigan’s Delabole Reveals the Secret Life on an inward-looking Place A review by Gage McKinney This article is a reprint from Tam Kernewek, Spring 2008, Volume 26, Issue 1 Now that Catherine Lorigan’s history of Delabole has been released it can’t be long before tourists are seen wandering the old slate quarry village using the book as their guide. With its colorful maps of Delabole, Pengelly and the parish of St. Teath, and with photos of quarry and village, the book could make a useful guide, though its scope is much larger. Delabole: The History of the Slate Quarry and the Making of its Village Community combines economic,, social and religious history to lead us not merely through streets and lanes but through the historic consciousness, the inner life of a remote and inward-looking place. Lorigan’s book began as a dissertation, and happily developed into something more, a readable landscape. Here’s a book to teach us about slate. Lorigan begins with the geology and moves to the economics of the business, describing developments and the emergence of new products, such as powdered slate, that extended the life of the quarry. She traces the success and failures from the early capitalists, called “outadventurers,” to the nineteenth century joint-stock companies and twentieth century corporations. She explains that the quarry has returned surprisingly in the twenty-first century to single-family ownership. While economics are important, even more revealing are the stories of the people who made Delabole and gave the village and surrounding hamlets their character. Among them were the various quarry owners. While some lived far off in Plymouth, others were enmeshed with the community, sitting on the parish council, school board and judicial bench, and playing the chapel organ. Their wives organized teas and bazaars and visited the sick. The best kind of leader was Robert Pearce, who began life in the quarry but for his gifts as a student rose to become headmaster from 1893 - 1920. As a teacher, he introduced the children of quarrymen to Shakespeare and Walter Scott. Whether serving as clerk to the sanitation board, honorary secretary of the Liberal Association, chairman of the war memorial committee or chapel preacher, he drove community improvement. Lorigan tells as well the story of working families who inhabited two or four-room cottages, tended garden plots and took in lodgers though they hardly had room for themselves. She describes the leisure time activities of the workers, including the tea treats and games that the community sanctioned and the poaching and gambling the judges and preachers condemned. An interesting chapter describes the influence of Welsh methods and strategies, and the more direct influence of Welsh managers, on Cornwall’s famous quarry. Cornishmen themselves gained valuable experience in Wales, and migration between the two Celtic lands often preceded a longer migration across the Atlantic. For those living far from Cornwall, the book’s attention to migration gives it a special appeal. Lorigan traces quarry workers to Tasmania, the “Delabole” quarry of South Australia and the slate belt of Pennsylvania and elsewhere. Some of the most intriguing material deals with the movement of workers within Britain, especially to Yorkshire and the Lake District. return migration of slate workers gave rise to a section of cottages back in Cornwall called “California.” Given the detail of this 270-page book, perhaps only determined readers or those whose families actually lived near Delabole will read it from cover-to-cover. A wider range of cornish enthusiasts will want a copy for reference to this corner or north Cornwall, defined by a unique kind of mining. For myself, having discovered the hidden life of Delabole in these pages, I’m looking forward to seeing the revealed life of the place on my next excursion to cornwall. I’ll take along Lorigan’s book for my guide. THE WEST BRITON AND CORNWALL ADVERTISER 3 JANUARY 1851 West Briton newspaper transcripts at: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~wbritonad/cornwall/intro.html Transcribed by: Julia Symons Mosman, OPC for St Austell and Rita Bone Kopp, OPC for St Stephen In Brannel, along with Isabel Harris, William Kemp and numerous other dedicated volunteers. LITERATURE, & C. Practical Observation on the Diseases of the Cornish Miner, Part 1 - Consumption. By William Wale Tayler, M.R.C.S.E., Surgeon to Fowey and Par Consols Mines, &c., London; John CHURCHILL, Princes- street, Soho. Here are some excerpts from this very interesting article published in 1851. The true Cornish miner," he says," is quite of a distinct race from the agricultural labourer of the county, and they differ as essentially in habits, appearance, and temperament, as if they belonged to separate nations. In stature, he is generally below, rather than above the middle height; in form not stout, but compact, well proportioned, exhibiting no great muscular development, though his strength and powers of bearing fatigue are surprising; his distinguishing characteristics are shrewdness, intelligence, indomitable perseverance, and a fondness or passion for what in the dialect of the county is called "venturing.” Mr. Tayler justly conceives that this persevering and "venturing" spirit strongly operates to excite the Cornish miner to seek for the earth's mineral treasures. Most persons who have found an opportunity to observe the habits of the Cornish miners, will also agree with him, that the majority of them are industrious, moral, and sober men. He observes that "the miner is generally a religious man, and usually a member of some of the numerous dissenting sects with which Cornwall abounds, seldom of the Church of England. The author remarks on the great partiality for dress which they and their families exhibit, and which may be seen in the mining districts every Sunday. The "mine-maidens," he says, "carry this fondness to extremes; all the dresses exhibited in the plates of the monthly books of fashion, may be seen at Tywardreath or St. Blazey on a fine Sunday afternoon, not even omitting the additional accompaniments of parasols, lace-edged pocket-handkerchiefs, &c." He observes, however, (on the other side of the account) that they are "strong, healthy, active, well-formed girls, and make for the most part very good wives, generally contriving to hold the reins of power in their own hands, ruling their husbands and his finances, with a good deal of tact and discretion; for be it known that the whole of the earnings or gettings are generally entrusted to the wife's care; and, like a good Chancellor of the Exchequer, she lays out the surpluses to the best possible advantage." The author notices - what is very commendable - the affectionate interest which miners' families generally take in the welfare of their kindred. He next draws the distinction between the labour of tutwork and tributors, which is well known to most of our readers; and in doing so he makes the following remarks: "A miner's son generally begins at the age of fourteen or fifteen to accompany his father in his labours underground, and even at an earlier period; but this extremely youthful initiation to the art is not, as a stranger might imagine, at all injurious to his future health, for I have ascertained, by repeated inquiries, that the oldest miners now capable of working are those who commenced in their earliest youth." "Many of the miners live from four to five miles from the seat of their work, which I consider is very injurious to their constitutions; imagine a man, after working eight hours in a place so hot, that the very water he has carried down with him in his keg has become undrinkable from the intense heat - and moreover that he has been working quite divested of all clothing - and then walking several miles in the depth of winter, exposed either to heavy rain, or to the intense cold of frost or snow; and yet all this danger is quite unnecessarily incurred, as there are plenty of habitations to be found in the neighbourhood of the mines.” The Crier staff will have copies of this seven page article available at the June meeting. Also, the article wil be available to members in an online pdf file or a paper copy on request from: Anne Stephens, 23 Weldon Road, Lake Hopatcong, NJ, 07849 or email at AnneStephens@optonline.net “The Duchy is one of the greenest regions in the UK. “ For more information on the greening of Cornwall, see the article “Sustainable Cornwall” in Cornish World, Issue 57, Apr/May 2008 pg 24. Copies of the article are available on request from CHSE library. Or: Subscribe to Cornish World at: Cornish World Media PO Box 71, Penzance, Cornwall TR18 2ZR UK or: email Nigel Pengelly at: editor@cornishworld magazine.co.uk CHSE library New additions to our library: Books: Who Were he Celts? Kevin Duffy A Prospect of Cornwall Donald R. Rawe PASCOE’S all over the world W. H. (Harry) Pascoe Tales of the Cornish Miners John Vivian The Story of Troon David Oates Oxford Furnace, NJ Edited by George K Warne In the Late Nineteenth Century (1855-1875) ∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞ ∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞ Book Review of books in our society library by Myna Dumpert: The books below are a good source to put flesh on the bones of your Cornish Ancestors in writing their stories: “Life in Cornwall” In the Early Nineteenth Century ( 1810-1834) “Life in Cornwall” In the Mid Nineteenth Century (1835-1854) “Life in Cornwall” “Life in Cornwall” At the end of the Nineteenth Century (1876-1899) The four books comprise excerpts from the West Briton Newspaper selected and edited by Rita M. Barton. If you are enjoying the excerpts published in the Crier each month, you will enjoy these books. Ms Rita Barton has chosen the selections with a view to giving the reader a well rounded understanding of all aspects of Cornish life. It gives one insight into the specific areas in many cases where our ancestors lived. There are fairs, cattle markets, mine workings, accounts of wrecking, plagues, schools, superstitions and word of those you came to America and lost their lives or returned rich. It is sometimes humorous, sometimes sad, but very informative. Each has a good index with topics, names of places and people. “A History of Cornish Methodism” by Thomas Shaw This is a book of 136 pages on the history of Methodism in Cornwall as well as insight into the people, the preachers, and chapels. It includes the later off-shoots. It speaks of the beliefs and the puritan traditions of the original Methodist people, the musical instruments used in the chapels and parish churches and some Cornish traditions in general, such as the funeral walk with instruments and singing of hymns. I found it very interesting. It has a good index of names of towns and peoples. I did find a short mention of my Captain Lean as a class leader in Camborne.
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