Born at Allt-y-ffynnon, Aberhavesp, Montgomeryshire, 23 March 1785, son of Richard Newell, farmer, and Bridget his wife. In 1786 the family moved to Gwernfyda, Llanllugan, where Richard attended the school kept by the Rev. John Davies and David Davies. Afterwards (1786) they moved to Bryn, Llanwyddelan, where the father died in 1800. After this the son attended the school kept by his uncle, John Roberts (1767 - 1834), at Llanbryn-mair. In 1803 his mother and he moved to Hen Neuadd, Manafon, where they lived until 1831. In 1811 he married Elizabeth Griffiths of Cefn-du, sister of Evan Griffiths (1778 - 1839), Meifod, by whom he had nine children. He was elected an elder of the chapel at Llanwyddelan and was accepted as a preacher at the Llanfair Association, 1821. He was one of the first to work among the English on the Montgomeryshire borders and his greatest work was in connection with the Sunday schools and the temperance movement. About the year 1819 he was appointed high constable for the Berriw district and with the aid of the law he was able to put down interludes, Sunday wakes, and other disturbing influences. Several of the ring-leaders were prosecuted at the quarter sessions and there was a marked improvement in order and propriety throughout the district. In 1831 he moved to Plas-bach, Meifod, and in 1846 to Cwm, where he died 22 June 1852. Together with Morris Davies (1796 - 1876), Bangor, he published a periodical for young people and children, entitled Pethau Newydd a Hen neu Drysorfa i'r Ysgol Sabothol. This publication ran for four years (1826-9), and was probably the first of its kind in Welsh. Richard Newell kept a number of diaries containing notes of Associations, Monthly Meetings, etc., covering the years 1813-50, these manuscripts are among the Calvinistic Methodist Archives in the N.L.W.
Published date: 1959
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