The War Graves of Ystradgynlais

Matthew Powell

Matthew Powell, M Powell on the Ystradgynlais War Memorial, served with the Welsh Regiment and died of pneumonia in Mesopotamia in 1916. Note, that he appears on the Cwmtwrch section of the war memorial as well, but under his middle name of Tom (T Powell).

The information on Matthew Powell has been compiled from a number of sources, including the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, from the South Wales Voice newspaper, and the Parish Burial Register (courtesy of the Swansea Archives).

NameMatthew Tom Powell
Date of Death20th July 1916
Place of DeathMesopotamia
Age at Death36
Unit and RegimentWelsh Regiment; 8th Bn.
Service Number6649
Additional InformationBorn Shorditch London 1880. Lived Old Lamb Upper Cwmtwrch Prior to war Coal Miner Hewer. Enlisted Cardiff 8/10/1900 for the Welsh Regiment as a Private. Married Hester (born Poplar London 1889).
MemorialBASRA MEMORIAL - IRAQ; Panel 24.
Local MemorialsYstradgynlais War Memorial
Family DetailsMarried to Esther Frances Powell of Upper Cwmtwrch
Known BrothersWilliam
Known DaughtersEdith POWELL (born Cwmtwrch 1911)

From the Labour Voice newspaper, 16th October 1915 :-

Private Matthew Tom Powell, Cwmtwrch, has been wounded at the front. He belongs to the 2nd Welsh division and at present is at Cardiff hospital. Private Powell left here at the outbreak of war (he and Pte. Edgar Rosser went together) and had a fine send off from the inhabitants of Gwys. His wounds are not so serious as was reported at the time. He had a fractured wrist and a bullet through the muscle of his arm.
Mrs. Powell and her children journeyed to Cardiff last Wednesday to see him and found that he was making speedy progress. He is expected to arrive at Gwys some day this week.

From the Labour Voice newspaper, 23rd September 1916:-

News has been received by Mrs. Esther Frances Powell of Upper Cwmtwrch of the death of her husband Sergeant Matthew Powell of the Welsh Regiment which took place at sea on 20th July. The immediate cause of death was pneumonia and deceased was on his way home to a hospital from Mesopotamia. Two young children have been thus rendered fatherless. The late Sergeant Powell previous to joining the army, worked as a collier at Rhosamman Colliery.

From the Cambrian Daily Leader newspaper, 23rd September 1916 :-

Sergeant Tom Powell, whose death from pneumonia in Mesopotamia, has just been announced, is the first Upper Cwmtwrch man to fall in the war. Several from the district have received wounds but Sergeant Powell is the first to give his life. Deceased was very popular in the valley and previous to joining the service was engaged as a collier at Rhosamman Colliery. Much sympathy is extended to Mrs Powell and the two young children in their bereavement.

From the Labour Voice newspaper, 18th August 1917 comes the report of his brother home on sick leave:-

Private William Powell of the Munsters, Cwmtwrch, has arrived home on sick leave from Salonica. He was the first man to enlist from Cwmtwrch at the outbreak of the war and his brother Sergeant Powell died from fever some time ago.



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