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Llandeilofawr Workhouse

Punishment book entries 1878-1907

Carmarthenshire County Archive.

Workhouse Punishment Book, 1878-1907

Record Number: Abercennen 526.

Note: Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders allows for the substitution of the inmates dinner with:

  • eight ounces of bread, or
  • one pound of cooked potatoes, or
  • boiled rice

and withdrawl of all butter, cheese, tea, sugar, or broth the inmate might otherwise receive for a period not exceeding 48 hours. Article 131 allows for confinement not exceeding 12 hours.

  1. Jan 17, 1878
    Mary Williams, aged 45
    Offence: Threatening to crumble an inmate's head, disobeying the Matron, and swearing at the Master with her fist in his face.
    Punishment: Placed in the Refractory cell until the assistance of a constable was obtained to have her removed to the Town cell. Opinion: Satisfactory
  2. Jan 19, 1878
    Mary Evans, aged 33
    Offence: Using abusive language to those who gave evidence against her friend Mary Williams (who was committed) and disobeying the officers.
    Punishment: Kept on bread and water for 24 hours when she promised not to do such a thing again
  3. May 15, 1879
    Salina Rees, aged 39
    Offence: Refusing to cleanse her person, work and insulting the Matron.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders to her for 24 hours when a promise was made to mend her ways.
  4. June 21, 1878
    William Evans, aged 47
    Offence: Drunk and disorderly.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders to him for 24 hours.
  5. June 26, 1878
    Selina Rees, aged 39
    Offence: Refusing to cease making a noise when the order was repeated and insulting the Master and Matron. Punishment: Gave her in custody of the police but did not press the charge so she was discharged with a caution.
  6. July 18. 1878
    Mary Evans, aged 33
    Offence: Swearing at the Assistant Matron and pitching a bucket after the Matron - also very noisy since admitted this time.
    Punishment: Substituted for dinner according to Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders (she then wept and confessed her guilt and promised to behave better in future).
  7. Jan 9, 1879
    William Evans, aged 48. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Refusing to work and threatening the Master and Porter.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders for 48 hours to him.
  8. Feb 3, 1879
    William Evans, aged 48. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Refusing to work unless paid.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders to him for 48 hours.
  9. Mar 27, 1879
    William Evans, aged 48. Deaf and Dumb.
    Offence: Refusing to work and threatening the Master.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders to him for 48 hours.
  10. Apr 25, 1879
    William Evans, aged 48. Deaf and Dumb.
    Offence: Refusing to work and threatening and porter with his fists.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 to him for two hours and substituted his dinner according to Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders.
  11. Aug 28, 1879
    William Evans, aged 48
    Offence: Used violence towards the Master and Porter, was also drunk the previous night by coming from the funeral and stole one of the Boys' caps and refusing returning it. The cap was afterwards found by a boy from the town.
    Punishment: Gave him in charge of the Police.
    Observation: He was committed to prison for 14 days.
  12. Nov 25, 1879
    William Evans, aged 48. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Threatening the Master and Matron with a hammer and broke one of the inmate's scissors in spite of them while asked not to do it, and to return it.
    Punishment: Articles 129 and 131 of the Poor Law Orders for 3 ½ hours towards him.
  13. Dec 15, 1879
    Mary Williams, aged 46 (Maesquarre)
    Offence: Refusing to cleanse her person and causing a noise and annoying the other inmates. (Constantly very obstreperous).
    Punishment: Article 131 of the Poor Law Orders for 5 hours towards her from 11 am till 4 pm.
    Observation: She behaved herself in a beastly manner and tore two panes of glass. D.M.
  14. Dec 16, 1879
    Mary Williams, aged 46 (Maesquarre)
    Offence: Refusing to cleanse her person etc.
    Punishment: Sent away for a Constable.
    Observation: She was committed to prison for 21 days. D.M.
  15. March 1, 1880
    John Jones, aged 15 ½
    Offence: Theft of a knife and hid it in the woodhouse and annoying the other inmates.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 of the Poor Law Orders towards him from 9 am till 8 pm in the Receiving Room.
    Observation: He confessed and admitted the theft. D.M.
    • March 18, 1880
      (No case no.)
      William Evans, aged 49. Deaf and Dumb.
      Offence: Used his fists towards the old men and threatening the Master etc.
      Punishment: Applied Article 131 of the Poor Law Orders towards him from 9.15 am till 7.30 pm.
  16. May 14, 1880
    New discovery
    John Jones, aged 15 ½ years
    Offence: Intentionally tore a good pair of braces with a knife into divers parts and repeated theft of laces etc.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 of the Poor Law Orders towards him from 9.30 am till 7.45 pm in the Receiving Room.
    Observation: Confessed his guilt. D.M.
  17. May 24, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Stole a book of the value of 6d and endeavouring to escape detection, burnt it. Repeated thefts committed by him.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 of the Poor Law Codes towards him from 2.30 pm til 8.30 pm in the Receiving Room.
    Observation: Admitted the offence. D.M.
  18. July 10, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½.
    One of the Bettws family that is in the house [Bettws is in the Ammanford area.]
    Offence: Cutting 4 of the Boys' best trousers with a knife. Also, a pinafore and a scarf were afterwards detected. Considerable damage committed by him in a few minutes.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Codes for 48 hours and also Article 131.
    Observation: Admitted the offence. D.M.
  19. July 17, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½. He is a terror with the children
    Offence: Tearing two of the Boys' best caps and threw them in the closet. Also threw some clothing through the window to the wet while the boys were sleeping and threw others through the ventilator to the Garret.
    Punishment: Applied Articles 129 and 131 of the Poor Law Orders for twelve hours towards him in the Receiving Room.
    Observation: Admitted the offences and brought most of the articles back. D.M.
  20. July 19, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½.
    Offence: Throwing some of the children's clothing out through the window and others into the Garret while they were in bed.
    Punishment: Applied articles 129 and 131 of the Poor Law Codes for 12 hours to him. He began kicking and beating the door and was subsequently place in the straight (sic) jacket straps for about 3 hours which made him more quiet during the remainder of his confinement.
    Observation: Admitted the offence and returned the articles. D.M.
  21. July 22, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Throwing some of the other boys' clothing through the window after they had undress. Punishment: His father in charge of him at night at the Receiving Room.
    Observation: he is very closely watched or very likely more mischief would be committed by him. D.M.
  22. July 23, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Took some stones with him and placed them under his pillow and when the children were about asleep threw them through the window and broke a pane of glass.
    Punishment: Was placed in a straight jacket for about an hour and afterwards discharged until he slept.
    Observation: he wanted his brother to join him in jumping out of the window and run away.
  23. July 24, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Splitted open a pair of stockings at rising time and threw others through the window into the rain. Also, flung another pair of stockings into the closet and hit his brother with a stone on his head until the blood flowed.
    Punishment: His parents gave him a good thrashing.
    Observation: Incorrigible in a workhouse
  24. July 25, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Splitted a bed-sheet through the middle. No wearing apparel was left in the dormitory
  25. July 26, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Was discovered outside the Bedroom window with his feet on the front-door sill about jumping down. Had a sheet and counterpane with him.
  26. July 29, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Threw the Chamberware [chamber pot] through the window. It dashed to pieces. Also climbed on an idle bedstead until his life was in danger and tried Whide (?) himself there while the other boys were asleep.
    Opinion of the Guardians thereon: At a meeting of the Board of Guardians on 31st July 1880 it was resolved that proceedings be taken before the Magistrates for the purpose of putting the boy into Neath Reformatory
  27. Aug 1, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Tore a pinafore and a towel also a lead water pipe
  28. Aug 2, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Smashed two panes of glass with a piece of timber.
  29. Aug 4, 1880
    David Jones, aged 13 ½
    Offence: Removed the Brick-work and Grate in the Boys' day room.
    Punishment: Taken before the Magistrates Aug 7th 1880.
    Observations: He was committed to prison for a month and afterwards to two years in a Reformatory. D.M.
  30. Apr 7, 1881
    William Evans, aged49. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Assaulted an old man named John Harris and also broke his staff.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 of the Poor Law Orders from 1 pm till 3 pm and also substituted his dinner according to Article 129.
  31. Aug 2, 1881
    William Evans, aged 50. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Refusing to do work and threatening the Master.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him for 48 hours.
  32. July 16, 1882.
    At 5 am.
    William Evans, aged 51. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Creating a noise in the ward when the inmates were in bed and refusing to leave the ward at the Master's request. At 9.15 am he locked or bolted himself in the Work Room, consequently the door had to be broke open where he attacked the Master and the men, who came to his assistance, with a hammer.
    Punishment: Substituted his breakfast according to Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders. Had to use force to get him out of the ward. He was placed in the Straight Jacket Straps until a policeman arrived to take him and charged. Was subsequently committed to few days in prison before J. N. Gwynne Hughes Esq.
  33. March 25, 1888
    William Evans, 55. Deaf and Dumb
    Offence: Refusing to work.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 of the Poor Law Orders towards him for 48 hours.
  34. May ? 1888
    John Davies, aged 44 years
    Offence: Leaving the premises with the Union clothes without leave. Over the garden hedge.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him for 12 hours.
  35. 12 Jan, 1889
    David Davies, aged 50
    Offence: Drunk and disorderly and threatening an old man named James McLean.
    Punishment: Applied article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him for 48 hours.
  36. 10/15 June
    1889
    David Davies, aged 50
    Offence: Left the house on morning of Monday 10 June in workhouse clothes but did note return until Saturday 15 June in a drunken state and attempted to strike the master on his admission.
    Punishment: Applied article 129 of Poor Law Orders towards him for 48 hours.
  37. 24 Aug, 1895
    William Jones, aged 58 years
    Offence: Left the house about 9 am in the morning and at 12.40 in the yard of the White Horse was requested to go home. He did not take any notice and about 2 he was outside on the way leading to the Tramp Ward awaiting my arrival home from the Board when he attacked me with his fists and hit me and kicked me 3 times when on the ground. I got up at once and used my umbrella to defend myself and to each the front door to get out of his way and to call Assistance. But I had to throw off the umbrella and to defend myself the best way I could. He was rather drunk at the time.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 to him for two hours and substituted his dinner on Monday according to Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders and also stopping his tobacco.
  38. 2 July, 1900
    Enoch Carlen, aged 70
    Offence: Left the House straight from Dinner and did not return till supper was over at 5.30 pm worse for drink and most abusive to the Master.
    Punishment: The weekly allowance of tobacco was stopped for 2 weeks.
  39. 14 July, 1900
    David Davies, aged 61
    Offence: Sent on a message to Trapp for a few bars of soap and did not return til Wednesday night, the worse for drink.
    Punishment: Applied Article 131 for twelve hours bread and water.
  40. 18 July, 1900
    Charles Culley, age 13, Bertie Culley, age 12, John Henry Richards, age 8
    Offence: These 3 boys instead of going to school absconded and walked to Llanelly where they were seen wandering about by the police and locked up. I went for them on Thursday 19th July.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129. The two Culleys received six strokes and John Henry Richards 2 strokes.
  41. 15 May, 1901
    David Davies, 62
    Offence: Absconded with the Union clothes and sent home by the police.
    Punishment: 12 hours bread and water and kept in the Receiving Room.
  42. 24 Aug, 1901
    David Davies, aged 62
    Offence: Absconded with the Union clothes and sent home from the cells for which the Guardians had to pay for his lodgings and food.
    Punishment: 24 hours bread and water.
  43. 13 Sept, 1901
    David Davies, aged 62
    Offence: Absconded over the garden hedge before breakfast and sent home by the police, 17th Inst. The Guardians had to pay 2/6 for his lodgings and food.
    Punishment: 24 hours bread and water.
  44. 26 Sept
    [no year
    written down]
    David Harries, age 63
    Offence: After been out from Thursday this man returned on Saturday, 28 Inst. Drunk and riotous using bad language towards the Master and Porter.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him for 12 hours.
  45. 17 Feb, 1904
    David Jones, age 73
    Offence: Refusing to work, constantly going out without leave - Swearing the Porter.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him from 11 am till 9 pm.
  46. Apr 4, 1904
    John Evans, age 53
    Offence: Drunk and Disorderly.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him from 3 pm till 7 am in the Receiving ward.
  47. May 28, 1904
    Elizabeth Jones, age 52
    Offence: Had few hours leave but did not return until 10 pm. Drunk and using abusive language towards other inmates and disobeying the Officers.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders to her for 20 hours in the Receiving Room.
  48. Sept 23, 1904
    David Jones, age 73
    Offence: Constantly refusing to work when ordered to by the Master.
    Punishment: Applied Article 129 of the Poor Law Orders towards him from 4 pm till 9.40 am in the Receiving Room.
  49. Nov 14, 1904
    John Evans, age 62
    Offence: Drunk and using abusive language towards those who cam in contact on the public road - also bringing beer back with him to the house when requested to go to the receiving ward as he was not in a proper state through drink to go amongst the inmates in the day Room. He used violence towards the Master and constantly refusing to obey the Porter.
    Punishment: Gave him in custody of the Police at 5 pm. Was subsequently committed to fourteen days imprisonment before Dudley Drummond Esquire.
  50. Mar 4, 1907
    Joe Powell, age 77, and Lewis Edwards, age 48.
    Offence: I beg to report to the Board at 9 am two men were fighting in the day Room, both being of Quarrelsome nature. Powell received cut on head and had been laid up. These two men are constantly refusing to work when ordered by any officers.
    Punishment: The weekly allowance of tobacco being stopped this week and also shall do the same for next week.

The Punishment Book for Llandeilofawr Union Workhouse ends at this point.

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