James Owen of Penrhos

and his descendants

Anecdotes about Morgan

Anecdotes I was told about Morgan Maddox Morgan-Owen suggest that he had inherited aspects of his father’s character; both held strong opinions and I am told they did not get along. Like Timothy, Morgan very much enjoyed playing the role of 'the squire'. When the local church was without a vicar for two years he took it upon himself to take the service; he would don his uniform, line up the family and servants and parade with them to the church.

He used to pay the local lads to collect plovers' eggs from the gravel pits and he sent the eggs to Fortnum and Masons. He would also give a sixpence to children he met as he went about the village, for example on his expeditions to collect horse-droppings for the garden from the road. (One of his daughter often went with him and recalled that she would get a penny a day if she was good - but this never amounted to as much as sixpence a week!) His desire to recycle things went as far as rummaging through rubbish, principally seeking out nails and screws but he once found a silver cup. He also went to country house sales in the 1920's and 30's buying up a port cellar and buying the bric-a-brac that filled the outbuildings at the Hall.

Every day, in retirement, Morgan would sit in his Chippendale chair beside his Georgian breakfast table doing the Times crossword. He would carry each one around clipped to others until it was completed. His other recreations included riding, fishing and tennis.

He was never a great eater (Just enough to dirty the plate, his wife would say) but every day he drank a bottle of beer before and with lunch, several gin and Frenches before dinner, a bottle of claret with dinner – Doris was permitted a glass – a bottle of port after dinner then half a bottle of whisky and sometimes more. Every week he went to his club in Burton-on-Trent and when his son John went with him he would have to spend the afternoon waiting in the car. In the last three weeks of his life Morgan lived on watered beer. As well as being a member of Derbyshire County Club he also belonged to the East India and Sports Club, Vincent’s, and the Oxford Club.