Grace Jones

Septugenarian’s Epic Rescue of a Quarryman, Deiniolen, 1913

woman lifting man.jpg

Many women in quarrying districts - often widows, but also women with husbands, countless children, elderly relatives etc etc - took in quarrymen as lodgers throughout the late 19th and early 20th century. Their ‘heroic’ services were essential to the running of the quarries, but usually you don’t hear much about it (other than listings in the census as ‘lodging housekeeper’).

However, Elin Tomos found this story of Grace Jones, who lived in Deiniolen (which at that time was called Ebenezer), aged 73, in the Cambria Daily Leader. It was published on 26th May 1913 (on page 3, so if it had had a picture, we would like to think it would probably have been something like this one).


Grace Jones, at 73, managed to save her lodger’s life by carrying him unconscious from his burning bedroom at midnight. She suffered burns and shock, and most of her furniture (for quarrywomen were ‘mad on furniture’) was burned… but the ‘young quarryman’ survived, and went to hospital. What a quarrywoman!

Story contributed by Elin Tomos