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George Grant Francis collection

This is one of the Royal Institution of South Wales collections. George Grant Francis was a prolific collector of archives in the Victorian era, and might be said to be Swansea’s first archivist. In addition to collecting and preserving the records of Swansea Corporation, he amassed a considerable collection of old deeds and charters relating to the history of West Glamorgan, and without his efforts, these might have been lost to posterity.
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Tennant Collection

The Tennant family were very influential in the Neath area and further afield. In addition to owning and running the Tennant Canal which ran from Neath and Swansea, they owned an estate at Cadoxton-juxta-Neath, and were influential in local and national affairs. These papers relate to their industrial and estate interests, and also to their activities as a family and in public life, and give an insight into the political and artistic echelons of society, as well as illustrating the effects of world events during the 19th and 20th centuries on a single family.
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Briton Ferry Estate collection

The Briton Ferry Estate was one of the largest estates in West Glamorgan, the core of which consisted of the entire parish of Briton Ferry, and large parts of Llansamlet and Michaelston-super-Avon parishes respectively. The estate was originally much larger, with properties as far afield as Rhossili, Coity and Penderyn, although all the outlying parts were sold off in 1818 after the Earl of Jersey inherited the estate. The collection charts the rise of industry in the Neath and Port Talbot areas and its change from rugged farmland to mining, factories and railways, before its eventual decline in the 20th century.
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Leslie Evans Collection

The activities of Leslie Evans (-1997) had a major impact on the study of local history in the Port Talbot area. A local schoolteacher, he studied the area enthusiastically, and was instrumental in establishing the Port Talbot Historical Society, and also wrote prolifically on the local area. His papers contain not just his well-organised notes, but also the original documents that he collected.
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Swansea Corporation records

Swansea Borough was established in the early years after the conquest, and received several royal charters during the medieval period. The corporation records were in a bad state in mid-Victorian times, but thanks to the work of George Grant Francis, the charters, minute books, books of accounts and a wealth of other material was collected and preserved. The collection contains material that charts the rise of Swansea from medieval borough to industrial leader.
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