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September 7, 2013 / Joanne Yeck

The Welsh Community: Lettie Morgan

Lettie Morgan

Lettie Morgan of Buckingham County
Courtesy Bob Jeffery

The Welsh community in Arvonia, Buckingham County, has a rich and fascinating history.

Among the Welsh natives living there in the early 20th century was the Morgan family.  In 1912, Lettie Morgan, pictured here, was crowned second maid of honor to the Queen of Love and Beauty at the tournament held at New Canton, Buckingham County.  Her portrait clearly shows Lettie’s charm.  She was twenty years old when she was honored at the tournament.

Bob Jeffrey remembers that, even in the 1950s when he was visiting his relatives in Arvonia, it was “very Welsh.”  Bob recalls:

The Morgan family, like most of Arvonia, emigrated to the U.S. after the Civil War and were involved in the slate industry.  Lettie’s mother, Lettice Saes Pierce Morgan, ran a boarding house for Welsh slate workers in Arvonia on what is now known as Morgan’s Hill Road. The families that settled Arvonia – Pierce, Williams, Morgan, Jones and Jeffrey – were all from the same tightly knit community in North Wales, also known as Arvon (the mountainous area above Caerarvon where the great slate quarries of Penrhyn and Dinorwic were located).

Lettie P. Morgan (26 Jan 1892–31 May 1928) is buried in the Arvonia Memorial Cemetery.

For more about the 1912 Tournament, click here:  Buckingham County: Knights and Ladies

6 Comments

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  1. Nancy Davies Mickles / Sep 7 2013 1:53 pm

    I have heard of Lettie Morgan all of my life and how attractive she was and that she had a lovely voice and sang in the choir at the Welsh Chapel (now Arvon Presbyterian Church). Her brother, Dave Morgan, and my father, Carl Davies, were good friends and went fishing together often. Dave Morgan was Superintendent of the Sunday School at Arvon Presbyterian Church when I was a child and had a wonderful bass voice and sang in the choir. Their sister, Eleanor Morgan Jeffrey, played the organ and had a fine voice also. I believe that there was another sister, Lizzie Morgan Jones. She was a substitute teacher occasionally when I was in grade school in Arvonia.

    Hopefully, I haven’t placed some of these folks in the wrong family, but if I have maybe someone else will remember the Morgan family and make the necessary corrections.

    • Joanne Yeck / Sep 7 2013 2:02 pm

      Thank you, Nancy. The Welsh are famous for their wonderful voices. I’m eager to learn more about Lettie. She is fetching, isn’t she?

      • Elizabeth F. LeSueur / Dec 15 2014 6:19 pm

        Joanne, Letttie was my maternal grandmother’s sister. Unfortunately, she died way before I was born. I had always heard of her beauty and talents. My mother’s family was all Welsh, and I’m very proud of my heritage.

        What is your relationship to Arvonia?

        Elizabeth F. LeSueur

    • Elizabeth F. LeSueur / Dec 15 2014 6:16 pm

      Nancy, I remember you and your family well. Lizzie Morgan Jones was my grandmother, and Eleanor and Dave were my great aunt and great uncle. My mother was Marjorie Jones LeSueur and my father was Maury LeSueur.
      I am originally from Arvonia, then later moved to Richmond, VA and now reside on St. Simons Island, Georgia.

      Elizabeth F. LeSueur

      • Joanne Yeck / Dec 15 2014 7:12 pm

        Elizabeth, Many thanks for your comments. It’s always good to learn more Buckingham interconnections. This photo of Lettie Morgan is one of my favorite Buckingham portraits. She must have been a delight! Some of my extended Harris, Chambers, and Allen family lived near Arvonia and Penlan. My Buckingham roots are spread across the northeastern part of the county from the Slate River to Well Water to the Horseshoe Bend and along the James River to New Canton. Joanne

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  1. The Arvonia Inn | slate river ramblings . . . .

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