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Morgan roots the family tree.

Byline: By Claire Hill Western Mail

Everyone in the UK is related back to a Welsh Morgan, says the publisher of a new series of CD-Roms on the family name.

Marriage, the changing of names and the lack of easily accessible records mean that people across the world could be linked to a Morgan without knowing it.

David Morgan, from Solihull in the West Midlands, began researching his family name after his grandchildren pestered him for a family tree.

He said the surnames Evans, Price, Pryce, Williams and Thomas, among others, all seem to be linked to some of the Morgans.

'Almost every family in the country has got a Morgan from South Wales in their line,' he said.

'Even though you probably do not have connections with the name Morgan now, you probably do somewhere down the line.'

But the belief that all Morgans are related to the Tredegar clan is wrong - as the self- taught genealogy expert has discovered the complicated truth.

'Whenever people come to South Wales to ask about the name Morgan, they are pointed to the Morgans of Tredegar.

'They were the family who kept extensive records, and everyone tries to link into those records.'

However, by studying a book called Limbus Patrum Morganiae et Glamorganiae, Lordships of Morgan and Glamorgan by George T Clark, he has created easy-to- understand CD-Roms charting the extensive genealogy of the Morgans.

'I have been able to go back to Welsh history and the Princes of Glamorgan,' said Mr Morgan.

'They were numerous and had a fortress in Baglan before the Normans attacked, and Morgans such as Iestyn Ap Gwrgn were forced into the hills.'

David Morgan, who runs the Morgan Society, believes the name has Celtic origins from the goddess of fertility, Morrigan, and spread across the UK and the world through inter-marriage.

'Many versions of the name got lost down the years as the families intermarried and took on new names.

'One of the most fascinating people is Lewis of Van.'

Edward Lewis brought his family to Monmouthshire around 1529 but, despite his surname, he can be traced back to the Princes of Glamorgan in the Limbus Patrum.

Mr Morgan has produced not only a CD-Rom on the Princes of Glamorgan but has also compiled details for Lewis of Van, the Matthew Family of Llandaff, the Family of Herbert, and the Morgans of Tredegar House.

'The Herberts were the most ambitious crowd of Morgans, who wanted to intermarry with everyone.'

In the 1881 Census for Great Britain there were 66,996 Morgans listed, with the largest concentrations found in Glamorgan, Monmouthshire and London.

The vastness of the family bearing the name has been blamed by Mr Morgan as the main reason people haven't researched the family tree.

He said, 'The Guild of One-Name Studies never seems to bother with the big names because they are said to be too vast.

'I could work for the rest of my life and still not finish all the Morgans, but at least I've made a start.'

The Morgan Society say that families with the name Leyshon can link themselves back to the Princes of Glamorgan, through a son of Morgan ap Caradoc.

The success of the Morgan society has been continued with the creation of branches in America and Australia.

Mr Morgan said, 'Every day I get emails from Morgans across the world wanting to trace their Welsh roots.'

Morgan Freeman : The Hollywood actor who has starred in more than 50 films, including Driving Miss Daisy and Se7en. It might not be his last name, but that does not mean that Morgan isn't necessarily related to a Welsh Prince.

Rhodri Morgan : The First Minister was born in Cardiff and later educated at Oxford and Harvard. Morgan's great-great-grandfather, Morgan Morgan, became famous at the height of the Rebecca riots when he shot Colonel Napier, the head of the Glamorgan yeomanry.

Barry Morgan : In 2002, he replaced Rowan Williams as the Archbishop of Wales. In 1986, he was appointed Archdeacon of Meirionnydd and Rector of Criccieth with Treflys. He was elected and consecrated Bishop of Bangor in 1993 and in 1999 was elected Bishop of Llandaff.

Henry Morgan : Born around 1635 in Llanrumney, this famous Morgan took part in Spanish colonial raids and moved to the West Indies where he became known as one of the buccaneers. He is seen as both a leader and an explorer.

Piers Morgan : The former Mirror editor was forced to stand down last month after publishing a series of hoax pictures. As editor he was famed for mixing celebrity gossip with serious news and presented series Tabloid Tales.

Elaine Morgan : The Western Mail columnist is also a self- taught anthropologist.

E.M. Forster or Edward Morgan Forster : Part of the Bloomsbury set, Forster was taken under the wing of writers such as Virginia Woolf. A Room With a View and The Longest Journey are two of his most famous works.

Harry Morgan : The American actor played Col. Sherman Potter in M*A*S*H.
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 10, 2004
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