Black Sheep

Finding an ancestor with a criminal past, can stir up all kinds of emotions.  If the ancestor is a distant relative or far removed by time, then it may be interesting or exciting to find out what they got up to.  So far in my research I have found two ancestors with a criminal past thanks to Findmypast's Criminal Records.  The first was known about within the family, while the other was a completely new discovery.  Today I am going to write about the former.

David Cynon Jones was born in 1877 in Llandysul, Cardiganshire, Wales.  In the 1881 and 1891 census' he is living with his parents Evan and Margaret Jones in Llandysul.  Between 1891 and 1897 he becomes a printer and on the 24th December 1897, he marries Martha Evans in Newcastle Emlyn Register Office.

Martha and David, live with with Matha's family at Velindre in Carmarthanshire and they go on to have two children, Jonathan Ifan Ifor Evans and Hugh Ceredig Jones in 1898 and 1899 respectively. This is were the family story comes in. David apparently sleeps with Martha's sister Margaret and in 1901 both Martha and Margaret give birth to baby girls.  Martha's daughter Margaret, dies at a few months old and Margaret's daughter survives into old age.

Once David was found out, he leaves Martha and moves to Aberdare in Glamorganshire, where he changes his name to Arthur Clifford.  In 1904 he marries a Mary Edith Williams at Merthyr Tydfil Register Office, and in 1905 David and Mary have a son, Arthur Edwin Clifford.

At some point between 1905 and 1911, David leaves his second family and ends up in Swansea, Glamorganshire, Wales, but not before he is tried at Carmarthan Quarter Sessions on the 18th January 1911 for bigamy.

As you can see, David was sentenced to one months hard labour, and by the time of the 1911 census, he is living and working in Swansea.  During the First World War, David briefly served in the Welsh Cyclists, before being discharged due to ill health.  

Not much more is known about David until his death on the 7th April 1930 of Bowel and Liver cancer at the age of 52.

I still have further research to carry out, as I want to see if there are any newspaper reports into his trial, but currently these are not online at the moment.


  1. We have scoundrels over here in the US too! It can be like trying to figure out a detective story sometimes. Thanks for your work on this Nicola!


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