James Owen of Penrhos

and his descendants
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Arthur Owen

To return to the tree, Sir Robert Owen and his wife, Margaret, had several children. Their first son, William, died in infancy (d 1687) but their second son and heir was also called William (c1688-1767). There were also sons Arthur (1692/3-1739), Lewis (1696-1746), John (c1692-1732) and Edward (d 1697) and daughters Elizabeth and Frances.

Olwen Hedley's tree indicated that Arthur Owen was James Owen's great grandfather. However, it is generally accepted that he died sine prole having married Mary Griffith, daughter of Robert Griffith of Brymbo (see Griffith's Pedigree (Bodsilin, p 136)). Several sites (e.g. this site) confirm that Arthur married Mary Clayton (née Griffiths) and that Arthur was a soldier who died in Bristol in 1739, leaving behind an endless tangle of administrative affairs from his wife’s previous marriage; she had died about a year earlier. Conflicts over Arthur's estate, between the Owens, the Lysters and the Claytons, resulted in several hearings at the Chancery courts. Although Arthur and Mary had no children, Mary had at least one child by her previous marriages. Arthur was buried next to his mother, at Selattyn.

This account, from the National Library of Wales, gives a great insight into the individuals within the family, with extracts from letters exchanged between them, and observations from others who knew them. It says, of Arthur's younger brother,:

Penrhos Hall Lewis (‘the Doctor’) was William Owen’s youngest brother, the charmer of the family: witty, entertaining and popular with the ladies. Like many younger sons of the gentry, he embarked reluctantly on a career in the church, based at Barking, Essex. His poor stipend was enhanced by the prebend of Hereford and later he obtained the living of Wexham, Buckinghamshire, where he died in 1746. During visits home to Brogyntyn, Lewis Owen had met and fallen in love with pretty Elizabeth Lyster, whose parents owned the Penrhos estate (right) . His ardent courtship came to be the talk of Shropshire and to everyone’s satisfaction they married in 1740.

This could have been the link between James Owen and Penrhos were it not for the fact that neither of Lewis and Elizabeth's children, John Owen of Moynes Court, who died on 18 December 1823 aged 82, and Margaret (b 1743) who died on 25 October 1816, married.