Born 11 May 1880, only son of Edward Davies and Mary, daughter of Evan Jones, a Calvinistic Methodist minister who was closely related to John Jones of Talysarn (1796 - 1857. He was the grandson of David Davies (1818 - 1890, the Welsh industrialist of the Victorian period, whose energy and enterprise he inherited. Educated at King's College, Cambridge, he entered the House of Commons at 26 years of age as Liberal member for Montgomeryshire, resigning his seat in 1929. In World War I, he raised and commanded the 14th Battalion, the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, at home and in France until 1916, when he was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to David Lloyd George.
His name will be inseparably connected with his two main public interests-the Welsh campaign against tuberculosis and the international crusade for world peace. In 1911, together with his sisters, the Misses Gwendoline E. and Margaret S. Davies of Gregynog Hall, he founded the King Edward VII Welsh National Memorial Association which, under his direction, developed into a nation-wide scheme with many sanatoria and hospitals. The Llandinam family also endowed the University Chair of Tuberculosis at the Welsh National School of Medicine. From 1919 David Davies was equally tireless in the pursuit of international peace, carrying on the tradition of the Welsh pioneers Richard Price, Robert Owen, and Henry Richard. A founder of the League of Nations Union, he later gained prominence as the foremost advocate of strengthening the League of Nations by the creation of an International Police Force. In 1932 he established the New Commonwealth Society for ‘the promotion of international law and order’, writing several books on the right use of force, notably The Problem of the Twentieth Century (1930). In November 1938, one of his ambitions was realised in the completion of the Temple of Peace and Health in Cathays Park, Cardiff.
For many years he was president of the University College at Aberystwyth and amongst his numerous benefactions was the endowment of the Wilson chair of International Politics, the first chair of its kind in Great Britain. He was also president and a generous patron of the National Library of Wales.
Though he had a wide range of industrial and commercial activities, essentially he was a countryman keenly interested in sport and at Llandinam he maintained foxhounds. He was an ardent supporter of the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society.
He was twice married. His first wife, who died in 1918, was Amy, daughter of L.T. Penman of Broadwood Park, Lanchester; they had one son and one daughter. In 1922 he married Henrietta Margaret (Rita), daughter of James Grant Fergusson, of Baledmund, Scotland (died 1948); they had two sons and two daughters.
Lord Davies died 16 June 1944. In September of the same year, his heir, Major DAVID DAVIES (1915 - 1944) of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, second Baron Davies of Llandinam (born 16 January 1915), was killed on the Western Front. He married Ruth Eldrydd, daughter of Major William Marshall Dugdale and his wife, of Llanfyllin, in 1939. They had 2 sons.
Published date: 2001
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