• Dr. Gomer Lewis

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A genuine postcard photograph showing the Archbishop of Canterbury and Dr. Gomer Lewis at the Church Congress which was being held at Swansea. The date is written on the rear in pencil as 9.10.1909.

They are being escorted by officers of the Swansea Borough Police each of whom is carrying a Borough 'Halberd'.

Gomer was born in June 1843 possibly1844,at Pensarn, Llangeler, Carmarthenshire, son of John Lewis, a tradesman and Baptist deacon. He was baptized at the age of 14, grew to maturity under the ministry of Benjamin Thomas (Myfyr Emlyn), and began to preach in 1862.

In 1864 he left the Newcastle Emlyn grammar school and went to Haverfordwest Baptist College. In 1867 he was ordained Minister of Salem chapel, Maesteg. New Salem was built, and by 1878 had admitted over 1,100 members. In March 1878 he went to Belle Vue, Swansea, and after the opening of Capel Gomer in March 1891 added the name 'Gomer' to his own.

He was regarded by the poor as a great philanthropist, was celebrated as a preacher, and had no rival as a lecturer. In 1898 he was chairman of the Union of Welsh Baptists, the subject of his address on that occasion being ' Our Nation and our Religion.' He died 11 July 1914 at Bron-deg, Tre-fach, and was buried at Saron, Llangeler.

*The Ross Mather Police Memorabilia of Wales Collection.

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