Issue 37

Weddings and spies: Georges Dufaud’s pioneering travel from Nevers to Merthyr Tydfil at the beginning of the nineteenth century

This article discusses the industrial and personal connections between the Crawshay family in Merthyr Tydfil and the Dufaud family in France. It draws on travel diaries, notes and letters by Georges Dufaud and his son Achille Dufaud on their visits to Merthyr, providing insights into the Frenchmen’s impressions of Merthyr and its industrial superiority, and of the practicalities of travel and funding at the time. These texts also suggest the extent of the technological transfer from Wales to France, and reveal Welsh fears of industrial espionage. Following the wedding of Louise Dufaud and George Crawshay, Welsh workers and Welsh machinery (from Neath Abbey) were exported to France. Both played a decisive role in the development of the Fourchambault iron works near Nevers.



Merthyr, Dufaud, Crawshay, iron, Wales, Fourchambault, Nevers, industrial relations.


Williams, H. (2024), 'Priodi ac ysbïo: teithio arloesol Georges Dufaud o Nevers i Ferthyr Tudful ar ddechrau’r bedwaredd ganrif ar bymtheg', Gwerddon, 37, 1–18. 

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