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Letter written to Thomas Benbow Phillips by Rhys Thomas at Cwm Hyfryd, dated 14 December 1881

Rhys Thomas had written a few lines which Mr Martin Underwood, a “worthy Comissario” would deliver on his way to Chubut. He explained that having left home on 10 September, they had arrived on 16 November. They had made the journey in 32 marches, travelling 3 leagues daily, and spending time resting their animals, looking for the road ahead and hunting their meals. Rhys Thomas reports on the difficulties they had to endure on their journey, from narrow ravines to snow. They had named one particular mountain “Bwlch y Gwynt” (Windy Pass). They had to build a wooden bridge to take them across a river before arriving at Cwm Hyfryd (Pleasant Valley). He noted that the country resembled Wales, with hills and dales, rivers, brooks, springs and wild flowers. Strawberries and currants grew plentifully, the soil was good and they were ploughing ready for winter. Mr John Evans and Mr Thomas had left the previous week, carrying heavy mail. John Davies and Owen Jones had arrived and brought mail for everyone, and people were glad to hear the Colony was saved from the snares of Messers Jones and Reed. Rhys Thomas mentioned a Cooperative Store would be needed in Cwm Hyfryd. He asked Thomas Benbow Phillips to write a long letter by return and sent his regards to Mr Lewis Jones, John H Jones, Mr Pritchard and all the CMC officials.

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